Marcelo Bielsa is surprised Andrea Radrizzani tried to sign Zlatan Ibrahomovic in January and does not expect him to join Leeds United this summer, Football Insider understands.
United owner Andrea Radrizzani made the shock declaration this week that he held talks with the superstar striker before he rejoined AC Milan two months ago.
A Leeds source has told Football Insider that Bielsa did not think there was any chance of the club signing Ibrahimovic in January and was not surprised he knocked back their interest.
The Argentine is believed to have little expectation of Ibrahimovic being lured in the summer, regardless of Leeds securing promotion.
It is a moot point whether Bielsa would regard the 38-year-old as an ideal target given the huge emphasis he puts on elite levels of fitness and conditioning.
Radrizzani told Sky Italy earlier this week he tried to persuade Ibrahimovic to return to England.
The Swedish all-time great had a successful two-year spell at Man United that ended in March 2018, when he signed for LA Galaxy.
Ibrahimovic and Paris Saint-Germain’s Edinson Cavani were both targets for the ambitious Radrizzani, who said: “I spoke with Zlatan Ibrahimovic more concretely.
“He could have given us that decisive push but he decided to go to AC Milan. He has been very honest and transparent with me.
“We need to be rational and coherent with the strategy of both coach and team. I did not even speak with (coach) Marcelo Bielsa about Cavani and Ibrahimovic because we never got to the stage that we could sit down and talk about them.”
The Swedish superstar signed up for a second spell at Milan after leaving LA Galaxy and has demonstrated his enduring quality with four goals from 10 appearances before the suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic.
His contract at the Serie A giants is due to expire in June, although the club have a 12-month option.
Leeds eventually signed Jean-Kevin Augustin on a January loan-to-buy deal after having multiple offers for Southampton’s Che Adams rejected.
In other Leeds United news, it can be REVEALED that one of the club’s stars is set to lose £34,000-a-week after talks.