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English Premier League 2016-17

Hong Kong surgeon saves Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s career after knee surgery on Manchester United star

Swedish superstar will be back, says his agent after Dr Freddie Fu restores torn ligaments in operation at his Pittsburgh base

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 02 May, 2017, 9:58am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 02 May, 2017, 10:44pm

Hong Kong-raised orthopaedic expert Dr Freddie Fu has saved the career of Manchester United superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the player’s agent said on Tuesday.

The Swede, who ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament while playing for United on April 21, underwent successful surgery under Fu and another doctor in Philadelphia, said Mino Raiola, and will be back in action as soon as possible.

With Ibrahimovic 35 years old, there were fears that the injury could end his storied career.

“Zlatan Ibrahimovic has undergone successful knee surgery. He will make a full recovery AND HAS NOT SUFFERED A CAREER-ENDING INJURY,” Raiola said in a statement (his caps).

“The procedure was performed by Freddie Fu, MD, and Volker Musahl, MD, of the UPMC [University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre] Sports Medicine programme in Pittsburgh.

As Zlatan Ibrahimovic vows to come back, meet the Hong Kong knee surgeon Manchester United hope can save his career

“Zlatan has started rehabilitation at UPMC and will remain under the care of Dr Fu and Dr Musahl throughout his recovery.

“Zlatan and the medical team are not available for interviews at this time. Additional updates will follow at a later date.”

Fu, who was born and raised in Hong Kong before moving to the United States for university, is something of a local legend in Pittsburgh for his work with both the university’s athletes and the city’s NFL team.

He is recognised as one of the world’s leading experts on knee reconstruction surgery. It has been reported that Ibrahimovic’s team sought him out for the surgery because of his experience on working on American football players, comparable in size to the powerful Swede.

Ibrahimovic faces perhaps nine months out injured, and his spell at United may be over with his contract expiring this summer.