Thierry Henry defends Zlatan Ibrahimovic elbow retaliation: I would have done the same!

(OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)

Thierry Henry has admitted he would have retaliated similarly to Zlatan Ibrahimovic after the Manchester United striker avoided a red card for elbowing Tyron Mings on Saturday.

In a farcical end to the first half at Old Trafford, with United and Bournemouth drawing 1-1, after an opening 45 minutes of tension between the pair the defender appeared to purposely stamp on the Swede's head.

Ibrahimovic hit back at the following corner, elbowing Mings in the side of the face, but both incidents were missed by referee Kevin Friend while Andrew Surname was handed a second yellow card for pushing the striker to the ground.

"If someone did that [Mings stamp on Ibra] to me, then no-one saw it, unfortunately, I'd try to do something back," Henry admitted, on Sky Sports, during half-time.

Jamie Carragher added: "[The stamp] is just horrific. He probably deserves a smack for that - although I’m not advocating what Ibrahimovic did - but it was disgraceful, stamping on someone when they are on the floor."

Gary Neville, who was on co-commentary duty, described Ming as a "coward" while echoing his colleagues' lack of surprise at Ibrahimovic's reaction.

He said: "Oh deary me. We have just seen a UFC battle. Stamping on someone’s head and then elbowing them back. Both of them should be off.

"Ibrahimovic is on the floor and that is a cowardly act from Mings, absolutely terrible. The elbow from Ibrahimovic is not much better, but if somebody stamps on your head you are bound to go for them.

"The referee has bottled it. I don't like saying that about referees but he has."

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