Former Arsenal midfielder Paul Merson has said that Manchester United have a "better chance of winning the Premier League" without Zlatan Ibrahimovic and claims the Red Devils are a "better team" without the striker.

The former Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain star suffered a serious knee injury, while in action for the 20-time English champions in April. He was released by United after his contract expired earlier in the summer.

Jose Mourinho's side re-signed Ibrahimovic on a one-year contract. In addition to this, the Old Trafford club have secured the services of Romelu Lukaku. The Belgium international, who swapped Everton for United in July, has scored four goals in three appearances so far.

United have won their first two league games comfortably against West Ham United and Swansea City. Ibrahimovic scored 28 goals across all competitions last season and Merson claims Mourinho's men never looked like winning the league with the striker leading their attack.

"This man is a legend, I don't use that word loosely, he's an absolute legend, he's won titles in seven different countries, you don't do that by luck," Merson told Sky Sports.

"But as time moves on now, Manchester United are a better team without him in it, and they've got a better chance of winning the Premier League without him.

"Don't get me wrong, I'm a massive fan of this lad over the years, I think he's been phenomenal.

"People said he was great last year, scored 28 goals, but Manchester United never looked like winning the Premier League last year.

"You look at them now, with him out of the team, you've got Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku, Marcus Rashford going forward, you've got Henrikh Mkhitaryan putting balls through the eye of a needle. They're playing 100mph, and so far nobody can live with them.

"That wasn't them last season, they were too slow. Le Tiss and I have played No 10, and you need pace up front [in front of you], and if you haven't got pace, it's pointless playing a No 10, because there's not a lot you can do."

Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Ibrahimovic netted 28 goals last term as United won two trophies and earned qualification for the Champions League Getty Images