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Ibrahimovic not joining Bologna as Napoli and Milan links strengthen

12:23 PM MYT 10/12/2019
ZlatanIbrahimovic-cropped
The club director addressed the pursuit of the veteran Swede, while two Italian giants firm in the race

Free agent Zlatan Ibrahimovic will not be joining Bologna because he has already made a decision to move elsewhere, according to the club's director Walter Sabatini.

Ibrahimovic had been linked with a return to Serie A via Bologna after leaving MLS outfit LA Galaxy at the end of his contract.

But the 38-year-old striker will not be moving to Bologna amid speculation over a switch to either Napoli or former club Milan.

"Ibrahimovic will not be coming to Bologna. He has made other choices," Sabatini told Tuttomercatoweb.

A return to Milan has been mooted for Ibrahimovic, who won the 2011 Scudetto during his two years at San Siro.

Italian rivals Napoli, however, have reportedly offered the ex-Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain star an 18-month contract.

Asked about Ibrahimovic on the eve of Napoli's Champions League clash with Genk, head coach Carlo Ancelotti told reporters on Monday: "I haven't spoken to Ibra today but I did yesterday [Sunday] evening."

"He told me he is in Los Angeles at the moment," Ancelotti added. "He feels really good and weather conditions are just perfect there."

The Swedish veteran's agent Mino Raiola threw a spanner in the works on Sunday when he suggested that Ibrahimovic's return to Italy wasn't set in stone.

"It’s not been said that he will necessarily return to Italy,” Raiola confirmed in Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Which of the three interested clubs will he choose? Who knows, we’re all free men.

“Could he retire? I’m not going to exclude anything but it is very unlikely. Ibra is still very well.”

Ibrahimovic created controversy in his native Sweden recently by angering supporters of his former club Malmo by becoming part-owner of rivals Hammarby.

A statue of the striker was set on fire outside Malmo's stadium, while there were media reports of racist messages sprayed nearby.

“I haven't heard anyone who thinks this is good,”  Malmo's official supporter group MFF vice chairman Kaveh Hosseinpour told Fotbollskanalen about Ibrahimovic's decision.

“Everyone is extremely critical. Some are disappointed, some are angry and others think it's idiotic. It's not 'happy' news, it's a development that feels uncomfortable and wrong.