Ibrahimovic banned for 3 Serie A matches


MILAN (AP) -- AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been banned for three Serie A matches for hitting an opponent, ruling him out of a key clash with Italian league leader Juventus.

In the 64th minute of Milan's 0-0 draw with Napoli on Sunday, Ibrahimovic was expelled for slapping his right hand on the side of defender Salvatore Aronica's face.

Ibrahimovic will miss a difficult game at Udinese next weekend, a game at Cesena the following weekend and the match with Juventus on Feb. 25.

Milan trails Juventus by just one point but the Turin club also has a game in hand.

Ibrahimovic has scored 15 goals in Serie A thus far, one behind league leader Antonio Di Natale of Udinese.

Last season, Ibrahimovic was banned five matches for disciplinary incidents.