MILAN - AC Milan striker Zlatan
Ibrahimovic has been banned for three games for swearing at a
linesman, Serie A said on Monday, as it handed down a second
hefty suspension on the Swede in two appearances.
Ibrahimovic was dismissed for insulting the official late on
in Milan's 2-1 win at Fiorentina on Sunday as he returned from a
two-match ban for striking an opponent in his previous outing.
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Serie A said in a statement the sanction was for an
"offensive remark" to the linesman even though the player said
after the match he was swearing at himself.
Milan did surprisingly well without their top forward during
his last ban, which he had reduced to two games from three on
appeal, beating champions Inter Milan 3-0 with strike partner
Alexandre Pato scring twice.
The Rossoneri, who lead Napoli by three points, are closing
in on their first Serie A title since 2004 but Ibrahimovic's
absence for half the six matches remaining still comes as a blow
and they quickly said in a statement they would appeal.
Ibrahimovic's recent loss of control mirrors a drop off in
his performance levels after he virtually carried Massimiliano
Allegri's side in the first few months of the season following
his move from Barcelona.
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