AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has mocked Pep Guardiola in his new book while also suggesting that his feud with Romelu Lukaku could continue now that Lukaku is back in Serie A. The Swede's latest autobiographical release, titled "Adrenaline: My Untold Stories", also sees him recall the famous clash with Marco Materazzi in 2010 that saw the defender hospitalised after he threw an elbow at his temple.
Ibrahimovic has been outspoken in his criticism of Guardiola ever since his short stint working under the Spaniard at Barcelona in 2009-10, and has come out to question his management style once again in the publication.
What has Ibrahimovic said about Guardiola?
Ibrahimovic previously claimed that "when you buy me, you are buying a Ferrari" while discussing his relationship with Guardiola - who he accused of filling him up with diesel instead of premium petrol.
The 40-year-old still believes the current Manchester City boss's man-management skills are lacking, as he says in his "Adrenaline" offering: “The ‘Philosopher’ prefers players who obey without talking back."
Ibrahimovic on his feud with Lukaku
Ibrahimovic and Lukaku almost came to blows on the pitch during a Coppa Italia clash between Milan and Inter in January 2021, with the Swede stepping up to his counterpart in defence of his team-mate Alexis Saelemaekers.
Lukaku supposedly asked what Ibrahimovic would do if he didn't stop, to which he replied: “I’m going to break every bone in your body if you open your mouth."
The players then engaged in a shoving match before trading more insults, at which point Ibrahimovic says he went for Lukaku's "Achilles' heel".
“Go tell your mother to do a voodoo spell for you,” he shouted. Ibrahimovic then claims that Lukaku yelled back at him from the tunnel entrance at San Siro: “I’m going to put three bullets in your head.”
Lukaku ended up re-joining Chelsea that summer, while Ibrahimovic went on to help Milan clinch the 2021-22 Scudetto.
The veteran striker only played a reduced role due to serious injury problems, however, and has suggested that he may have been under the effects of a curse placed upon him by Lukaku.
“Could it have been that Lukaku had performed some voodoo ritual to hurt me?” he said.
Lukaku is now back at Inter on loan after a disappointing first year back at Stamford Bridge, and Ibrahimovic has hinted that their rivalry could be reignited, adding: “In my mind, I decided that I had to settle things with Lukaku out on the pitch, the same way I had done with [Marco] Materazzi.
“Unfortunately, he left Serie A and we didn’t come up against them in the Champions League. But there will be other opportunities …”
Ibrahimovic on gaining 'revenge' over Materazzi
Former Inter centre-half Materazzi invited the wrath of Ibrahimovic in 2005 as he injured the attacker, then at Juventus, with a scissor tackle.
Ibrahimovic then set out for revenge in a Milan derby clash five years later, which came during his first spell with the Rossoneri on loan, and got it by cracking Materazzi on the side of the head with a well-disguised elbow.
“This is how things work in my world – you never forget and you wait patiently for the right time to take revenge,” Ibrahimovic said of the incident. “I told myself over and over: ‘When I get my hands on him, I’ll hurt him badly – so badly that he’ll remember what he did to me.’
"And I’ll take my revenge in the light of day, making my motives and intentions perfectly clear to everyone.”