AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has tested positive for the global virus, the Serie A club confirmed in a statement on Thursday. The statement also mentioned that no other player in the squad has tested positive, although defender Leo Duarte did test positive earlier on Wednesday and has since begun isolating.
“Zlatan Ibrahimović has tested positive for Covid-19 following a second round of swab tests ahead of tonight's game against Bodø/Glimt. The Club has informed the relevant authorities and the player has been promptly placed in quarantine at home. All other team members and staff have tested negative,” Milan’s official statement read.
The announcement came just hours before Milan were to face Norwegian outfit FK Bodo/Glimt in the Europa League third qualifying round.
I tested negative to Covid yesterday and positive today. No symptoms what so ever. Covid had the courage to challenge me. Bad idea— Zlatan Ibrahimović (@Ibra_official) September 24, 2020
The absence of the Swedish forward will be a major blow for Milan given the charismatic striker’s strong start to the season. Ibrahimovic was on the scoresheet during Milan’s Europa League second qualifying round win over Shamrock Rovers.
He also netted a brace during Milan’s Serie A win against Bologna to help them start their league campaign with a win.
The 38-year-old rejoined Milan from Major League Soccer (MLS) outfit LA Galaxy last December. He had previously played for the Rossoneri for a brief period from 2011 to 2012 and rejoined the club on a six-month contract initially.
However, his performances and leadership on the pitch led to the Italian giants offering him a new contract for the 2020-21 season. Ibrahimovic netted 11 goals and bagged five assists from 20 appearances for Milan last campaign.
With three goals in Milan's first two games of the new season, Ibrahimovic will undoubtedly be a big miss for his team. Besides Thursday’s Europa League clash, he’s set to miss out on the Serie A clashes against Crotone and Spezia before the first international break of the season.
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Miguel Medina