Zlatan Ibrahimovic in action for LA Galaxy

Jose rules out Zlatan return

Jose Mourinho has dismissed speculation that he could bring Zlatan Ibrahimovic back to Manchester United during the January transfer window.

The veteran striker has performed well for LA Galaxy since leaving the Reds and there has been some talk that he was being lined up for a move back to Manchester, given his strong personality is always a positive influence, in addition to his on-field contribution.

However, Jose flatly rebuffed the suggestion of a return, during his pre-match press conference for Sunday's Premier League game with Everton at Old Trafford.

When asked if any deal for Zlatan was possible, the boss replied: “No.” He gave the same answer when quizzed on whether he'd even consider it.

Jose Mourinho and Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the summer.
Jose Mourinho was reunited with Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the US on the Reds' pre-season tour.

The manager feels unable to give Romelu Lukaku a rest at the moment because of a lack of options in attack, but he is convinced the goals will start flowing again for the Belgium international.

Last season's leading scorer will be out to hit the net against his former club at the weekend, as he did in the corresponding fixture at Old Trafford in 2017/18.

“I always feel the game is the game,” Jose said, when asked if this could be the match where Lukaku turns a corner.

“I feel that in every game. One day, it will be the game and one day he will score and, I'm sorry, one day his confidence levels will be back to normal, which clearly they are not [at the moment]. But I always feel that every game is the game.

”If we had decided to give a rest to Lukaku against Juventus, who would have played as a striker?“ added Jose.

I don't think [Michael] Carrick can play as a striker. [Marcus] Rashford? And then who plays as a winger?

“At the moment, we are not in the best situation to try to think about resting players or trying to find solutions. The solution now is to play with the players we have.”

Romelu Lukaku during the game against Juventus.
Romelu Lukaku will be hoping to score against Everton at Old Trafford for the second season in a row.

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