Sport: Manchester United release striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Friday, June 9, 2017 - 14:15

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been released by Manchester United as per the Premier League (EPL) official website.

The Swedish talisman ends his one-year association with the Old Trafford club with his contract expiry. 

The Red Devils have declined a mutual option to extend the Swedish striker's stay at Old Trafford for a further 12 months, with Ibrahimovic expected to be out until 2018 after undergoing surgery to repair his damaged cruciate ligament last month.

The former Sweden international now looks set to officially leave Old Trafford with his current deal expires on June 30.

The former AC Milan and Juventus star scored 28 goals in 46 games last season following his free transfer from Paris Saint-Germain last summer, but a knee ligament injury suffered against Anderlecht in April threw his long-term future into doubt.

The 35-year-old's agent, Mino Raiola, claimed last month Ibrahimovic was keen to extend his stay at United but the club have decided to move on and have identified Real Madrid's Alvaro Morata as the man they want to lead the line next season.

Andrea Belotti of Torino is also a rumoured target of the Portuguese. Romelu Lukaku is expected to join Chelsea if they can agree to a fee with Everton after Diego Costa revealed he is surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge.

Morata, who scored 20 goals in 43 games at the Bernabeu last season, is seen as Mourinho's preferred choice. And there were reports in Spain on Friday that he has told the Champions League holders he wants to leave this summer.

United are still trying to negotiate a fee for the 24-year-old, who could cost as much as £60 million just 12 months after Real Madrid triggered a £26.3m buy-back option to re-sign the Spaniard from Juventus.