NYON/MILAN: Veteran Milan and Sweden centre-forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic has become the subject of a UEFA investigation for “having an alleged financial interest in a betting company”.

Two weeks ago reports emerged in Sweden that the 39-year-old could be facing a three-year ban – which would effectively end his career – for his partnership with a Malta-based betting company.

A UEFA statement said: “In accordance with the UEFA disciplinary regulations a UEFA ethics and cisciplinary inspector has today been appointed to conduct a disciplinary investigation regarding a potential violation of the UEFA disciplinary regulations by Mr Zlatan Ibrahimovic for having an alleged financial interest in a betting company.

“Further information regarding this matter will be made available in due course.”

If found to be guilty, Ibrahimovic would be in violation of Article 12 (2) of the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations.

The rules refer to any individual who “participates directly or indirectly in betting or similar activities relating to competition matches or who has a direct or indirect financial interest in such activities”.
Ibrahimovic was apopointed as a brand ambassador for Bethard in March 2018.
In a statement on the company’s website, Ibrahimovic said: “I have obviously been intensively courted by betting companies throughout my career, but up until now I have not been presented to anything that has triggered me.

“With Bethard, there was something different. It’s a company with Swedish roots, the founders are from my home town and they are true challengers who really wants to do things differently”.

The former Manchester United striker, who returned to the Serie A club for a second spell in 2020, signed a contract extension with Milan until the end of next season earlier this month.

** Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Romelu Lukaku have been fined €4,000 and €3,000 respectively for trading insults in January’s Italian cup quarter-final between Milan and Inter.