Massive boost for Chelsea ahead of FA Cup game against Man United

Zlatan Ibrahimovic could miss Manchester United’s FA Cup quarter-final at Chelsea if he is retrospectively punished after a controversial Premier League draw against Bournemouth.

Ibrahimovic appeared fortunate to escape a red card for elbowing Bournemouth defender Tyrone Mings in the first half of the 1-1 draw at Old Trafford on Saturday.

The striker’s challenge appeared to be in retaliation after Mings had stepped on Ibrahimovic’s head moments beforehand, though the defender insisted after the game that his stamp was not deliberate.

Bournemouth midfielder Andrew Surman was then dismissed for pushing Ibrahimovic to the ground in the aftermath, though Ibrahimovic – already on a booking – was given a lengthy talking-to by referee Kevin Friend following his elbow on Mings.

Ibrahimovic will not face any further action if Friend decides he took the correct course of action, but could be retrospectively banned by the Football Association if the referee suggests in his match report that would have shown a red card had he seen the incident in full.

If Ibrahimovic is charged – and found guilty of – violent conduct by the FA’s disciplinary review panel, the striker would be banned for three games, with United’s next domestic match coming at Stamford Bridge on Monday 13 March.

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