Manchester United star Zlatan Ibrahimovic suffered significant knee ligament damage in the Europa League clash between the Red Devils and Anderlecht, the club confirmed in a statement on Saturday.
“Detailed investigations on the injuries sustained by Marcos Rojo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic during Thursday’s Europa League match have confirmed significant knee ligament damage in both players that requires specialist opinions over the coming days,” United said.
Reports in the British press suggest the Swede could be out for as long as nine months, but the club did not provide details of how long he and defender Rojo would be sidelined.
“Estimations of time to full recovery will only be possible once definitive treatment plans have been decided after these consultations,” the statement noted.
Ibrahimovic, United’s top scorer for the season with 28 goals, had landed badly during the game and is expected to miss the rest of the season and the chance to add to his legend at age 35.
The outspoken striker is approaching the end of his one-year contract with United and there have been talks of a renewal as well as links to a transfer to the US.
A lot could change with the injury.
Beside the injuries which pose a major threat to Jose Mourinho’s quest for a top four finish in the Premier League and Europa League glory for his side, Thursday’s clash was tragic for football fans in Nigeria.
Many fans who were watching the United-Anderlecht clash at a viewing centre in Calabar were electrocuted when a high-tension wire fell on the roof of the building.
United have since send their condolences to the families of the victim, while President Muhammadu Buhari said he was shocked and saddened by the tragedy.
United will take on Spanish side Celta Vigo in the Europa League semi-finals on May 4 and 11, thanks to the costly victory.