Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s Man Utd regret revisited ahead of Europa League reunion

Manchester United are set for a reunion with Zlatan Ibrahimovic after drawing AC Milan in the last-16 of the Europa League.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men were paired with Milan in Friday’s draw after running out comfortable 4-0 winners in their last-32 clash with Real Sociedad.

As for Milan, they edged past Red Star Belgrade in the previous round on away goals, following up a 2-2 draw out in Serbia last week with a 1-1 stalemate in Italy on Thursday night.

Their showdown with United is the pick of the bunch in the round of 16, and the occasion will be extra special for Ibrahimovic.

The iconic striker spent 18 months at Old Trafford during Jose Mourinho’s turbulent stint as Red Devils manager, getting his hands on the League Cup and the Europa League in his debut season.

He got off to a flyer in Manchester, scoring 28 goals in his first 46 appearances, but a serious knee injury sustained towards the end of the 2016/17 campaign proved costly.

A 35-year-old Ibrahimovic only racked up another seven appearances for United in the first half of the 2017/18 season before leaving at the halfway point to join MLS outfit LA Galaxy.

And after departing the club, Zlatan expressed his regret over not heading to the Premier League sooner in his legendary career.

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  • “I feel sorry for the fans – if they'd seen me younger, they'd have seen a different lion,” he told United’s official website shortly after leaving in 2018.

    “For the Premier League, it would have been dangerous, as I would have eaten them for breakfast; instead, I took them for lunch.

    “But I came: they wanted me, I gave them me and I took over. Been there and done that.”

    Ibrahimovic scored 53 goals in 58 games for LA Galaxy before heading back to Milan, where he has scored 27 goals in 40 appearances so far.

    His return of 14 goals in 13 league games has helped Stefano Pioli’s men keep pace with Inter Milan in the Serie A title race, with Nerazzurri currently four points clear at the summit.

    READ MORE:Europa League last-16 draw in full: Man Utd, Arsenal and Spurs discover opponents

    READ MORE:Alan Shearer recalls fuming Roy Keane confronting him in tunnel during explosive bust-up

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