Jose Mourinho has implied that Zlatan Ibrahimovic could return for Manchester United during the latter stages of next season.
The Swede was officially released by the club last month following a knee ligament injury sustained in April that will keep him out until the new year.
Zlatan has spent the majority of his rehabilitation process at Carrington and could be offered a short term deal next season if he recovers well.
And Mourinho, speaking after his side’s 1-0 defeat to Barcelona, has noted that the 35-year-old will return after six months of the new campaign.
“We spent big money on a striker because, with strikers, you either spend or you don’t get,” he said.
“And we spent because of what happened to Zlatan and we cannot allow ourselves to be without an important, strong striker for the first six months of the season.”
The Portuguese’s prognosis suggests that Zlatan would only return to action by the end of January, but the man himself is determined to be firing by November – and who, I ask, has the authority to doubt him?
Either way, the fact that Zlatan – still considered part of the team by Paul Pogba – hasn’t found a new club and remains at Carrington suggests that United fans have not seen the last of the big Swede in a red shirt.