Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Tyrone Mings were lucky to stay on the pitch in Manchester United’s 1-1 draw with Bournemouth as they both should have been sent off for violent conduct.
Mings stamped on Ibrahimovic’s head while he was laying on the floor and the big Swede then launched his elbow into the Bournemouth defender’s head as they clashed in a set piece just moments later.
Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher both reacting at half-time claimed they should have been sent off for their actions, with referee Kevin Friend having a nightmare afternoon.
Speaking after the game, Ibrahimovic claimed he was just looking to protect himself.
“With the elbow situation, I jumped and I protected myself,” he said.
“I jumped high and he jumped into me, I think he jumped backwards and I jumped straight up. This situation happens. I went for the ball and unluckily he jumped into my elbow, nothing on purpose and hopefully he is not injured.
And on the stamp:
“What happens on the field stays on the field. I will never be a player that comes here and says he did that, he did it on purpose, he didn’t do it purpose. The game is hard and I am not here to blame somebody or something else. I take full responsibility that I didn’t score and we didn’t win.”
Losing our top goalscorer could have been a massive blow for United and although he wasn’t in top form against Bournemouth, missing a penalty in the second-half, Zlatan still has plenty to offer.
Hopes are he doesn’t face a ban this coming week as replays clearly show the actions of both players seem intentional.