Zlatan Ibrahimovic: PSG star aims dig at Chelsea 'babies' to grow up

PSG star was sent off after half an hour at Stamford Bridge last season

Click to follow
The Independent Football

Paris Saint-Germain star Zlatan Ibrahimovic struck a dig at his Chelsea rivals ahead of the Champions League last-16 second leg on Wednesday night.

The Swedish striker was sent off after just 31 minutes last season for a tackle on midfielder Oscar - the challenge bad but Ibrahimovic claimed it was the reaction of the Chelsea players that got him sent off. 

PSG, down to 10 men, went through after one of the worst Chelsea performances in recent memory, progressing to the quarter-final on away goals after drawing 2-2, but Ibrahimovic was furious and in the aftermath branded the Chelsea players "babies" for the way they reacted.

"I don't know if I have to get angry or start to laugh," Ibrahimovic said at the time. "For me when I saw the red card I was like 'the guy doesn't know what he's doing'

"That is not the worst. The worst is when I got the red card all the Chelsea players come around. It felt like I had a lot of babies around me."

Ahead of the second leg, Ibrahimovic showed that he has not totally forgotten about that incident at Stamford Bridge last season, although he stopped short of again calling the players babies.

Asked whether he thought the Blues would 'act like men' this time, Ibrahimovic response was subtle yet scathing

"Let's see," he said at a press conference on Tuesday. "The last game we played they were no indications of that.

"In that situation, from the last game here, I’d never seen anything like that before… from mature players like that, I didn’t expect it. But it’s a new game now. Let’s play it differently.

"I never think about revenge. Hopefully, I will stay on the pitch longer than the last time, to have the possibility to do things I’m good at. Play football."

Ibrahimovic, 34 and out of contract at the end of the season, has been one of Europe's premier talents for the past decade.

But for all his goals, 372 in 661 matches, and his 12 league titles (two revoked) in four countries, the Swede has never won the Champions League.

"When I was young and talking about the Champions League, yes, it was almost an obsession," he added. "But then I started to mature and get to know myself, which is difficult to understand, but I realised if I win it then it doesn’t make me a better player, or, if I don’t. It won’t make me a worse player.

"I am what I am. If I win it I’ll be very happy. I’ve been lucky enough to win a lot of trophies, at a lot of fantastic clubs and with a lot of fantastic players. Without them you don’t win trophies. I have a chance this season to do it, but it will not change the player I am. That is the difference."