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Romelu Lukaku Opens Up on Infamous Bust Up with Zlatan Ibrahimovic During Coppa Italia Clash

The pair came to blows during Inter's 2-1 Coppa Italia win earlier this season
The pair came to blows during Inter's 2-1 Coppa Italia win earlier this season / Marco Luzzani/Getty Images

Romelu Lukaku has lifted the lid on his infamous clash with Zlatan Ibrahimovic during Inter's 2-1 Coppa Italia win earlier this season.

The former Manchester United teammates butted heads in January's Coppa Italia quarter-finals as Antonio Conte’s side overcame a one-goal deficit to advance to the semi-finals. The pair squared up to each other and traded insults, leading to them both receiving one-match bans and a combined fine of £7,000 for ‘unsportsmanlike conduct’.

"We were 1-0 down, I had missed a goal and I was a little angry," Lukaku told Il Corriere della Sera (h/t Football Italia). "His words hit me. I am not happy about my reaction, but I don't let myself get pushed around.

"Ibrahimovic is a great footballer, he's won everywhere he's been, scoring more than 500 goals. I had a good relationship with him until I was at Manchester United, but we need these kind of footballers in Serie A. He wants to win for himself, I want to win for Inter and Ronaldo for Juventus. Now, there is [Jose] Mourinho at Roma. These are nice things for Italian football."

The 27-year-old also hailed Inter boss, Antonio Conte, as "the best coach" and revealed he was the reason why he joined Inter in 2018. “To me, Conte is the best coach and he immediately convinced me. When I signed with Inter, I texted him, saying: ‘I am arriving’,” the striker revealed.

“It’s always been a dream to play in Serie A. When I was at Manchester United, I used to tell Darmian: ‘I’ll go to Inter, talk to me in Italian, and reply in English.’

“When I arrived, I already knew the language and Italy has given me so much. We finished as runner-ups in Serie A and Europa League last season and Conte and I lived that as a defeat. We have been able to transform that into motivation.”