Mourinho: Willing to play Ibrahimovic behind Lukaku

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Jose Mourinho didn’t hate how Romelu Lukaku and Zlatan Ibrahimovic looked together despite Manchester United’s late loss at Bristol City in the League Cup on Wednesday.

So he may turn to the pairing again on Saturday when his Red Devils visit Leicester City for a 2:45 p.m. ET meeting at King Power Stadium (Watch live on NBC and online via NBCSports.com).

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Mourinho would use Ibrahimovic as a No. 10 with Lukaku, sitting just behind his fellow big striker. Ibrahimovic is not alien to playing a bit deeper in the formation, and in less structured systems like Paris Saint-Germain would drift into something more akin to “No.10” than center forward. From ManUtd.com:

“He played the last match [against Bristol City] in that period in the second half where we replaced Daley Blind with Lukaku and Lukaku played no.9 and Zlatan played no.10.”

“I know that was in the period where his energy was going down but, obviously, there are spaces where a no.10 plays and spaces where Ibrahimovic, even when he was clearly a no.9, feels comfortable to play. So, yes, why not?”

Why not, indeed? I like it more for the possibilities of changing the pace against a defense. Go from Martial-Lukaku-Rashford as a trident to twin towers atop a 4-4-2? Yes, please.