Not Bale: Mourinho tacitly reveals prolific striker may play for Man United next season

Zlatan Ibrahimovic could head back to Old Trafford in January after Jose Mourinho claimed that Manchester United remain on course to re-sign the prolific striker and he is “closer” to joining the club than any other club.

The former Inter Milan forward joined United on a free transfer from Paris-Saint Germain last summer and was their top scorer before being sidelined by a knee injury in April which ruled him out of action till December.

The Europa League winners decided not to extend his contract this summer but still believe the Swedish striker will choose them over his another former employer of his AC Milan, who are also interested in his services.

AC Milan have failed in their attempt to sign Chelsea outcast Diego Costa on loan and they are closely monitoring Ibrahimovic situation with the hope that they would bring him back to the club. The 35-year-old spent two seasons with the Italian giants before moving to PSG.

But Mourinho believes United hold the race to re-sign the former Barcelona forward in January.

Speaking on Ibrahimovic’s future: “Maybe he’ll stay with us,” Mourinho said.

“He has no contract but he is closer to Manchester.”

They have already signed Romelu Lukaku from Everton while Marcus Rashford is also available but the Portuguese boss want Ibrahimovic back at Old Trafford to add more depth to the squad.

He scored 28 goals for United across all competitions last season, helping them to win the Community Shield and EFL Cup.