Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Tyrone Mings both protest their innocence with retrospective FA bans likely

Both men attempted to downplay their unseemly clash during the action-packed 1-1 draw

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The Independent Football

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Tyrone Mings have both attempted to downplay their unseemly clash during Manchester United’s incident-packed 1-1 draw with Bournemouth at Old Trafford, with Mings claiming his actions were “not at all” deliberate and Ibrahimovic adding that the incidents should be left on the field.

The pair were involved in a lengthy and bad-tempered spat throughout the first-half, which erupted shortly before half-time.

Mings appeared to deliberately stamp on Ibrahimovic’s head after being tackled by the Swede, before Ibrahimovic retaliated a few moments later, catching the defender with a swinging elbow at a corner. 

Ibrahimovic had already been booked, but Kevin Friend decided against penalising either man, instead dismissing Bournemouth midfield Andrew Surman for a second yellow card for pushing Ibrahimovic to the ground in the aftermath. 

After the match however, Ibrahimovic was keen to stress that his elbow on Mings was not deliberate.

"Listen, what happens on the field stays on the field,” he told BBC Sport. 

“I am not someone who attacks someone off the field. You have the TV, you can see the images. I jump up and jump high and he jumps into my elbow.”

Mings also sought to downplay the dispute, adding that playing against Ibrahimovic was a 'dream” come true' for the 23-year-old.

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Mings claimed his stamp was accidental (Getty)

"I've watched him growing up through his career and dreamt of days like this,” Mings said.

"It was a good battle, you know what you're going to get playing against him. I enjoyed the battle all day.

"What he possesses in height in strength I also possess, we had to ride a lot of storms but we stood up to the test very well.”

The defender added that he did not mean to stand on Ibrahimovic’s head moments before he was elbowed by the Swedish international.

When asked whether he deliberately stamped on Ibrahimovic's head, Mings said live on Sky Sports: "Not at all. I would never do that. That's not in my game. Hard and fair is how I like to tackle but off the ball stuff like that isn't in my game.

"There was maybe an elbow when the ball came in after, I didn't see it, I felt it. But what happened after that with Surman getting sent off, I didn't see it.”

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