CL: Zlatan Ibrahimovic has answered his critics, says PSG manager
London: Paris Saint-Germain coach Laurent Blanc said that Zlatan Ibrahimovic had answered his critics by inspiring his team to victory over Chelsea in the Champions League last 16.
Ibrahimovic created the opening goal for Adrien Rabiot and then volleyed in a 67th-minute winner as French champions PSG won 2-1 at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night to complete a 4-2 aggregate victory.
The outspoken Swede has faced criticism throughout his career for failing to reproduce his domestic form in European competition, but Blanc said that he had proven his worth.
"Zlatan played a match in keeping with what he's done this season," the former France defender.
Ibra ka dabra: Paris Saint-Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during the Champions League Round-of-16 second-leg match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in London on Wednesday night. Pic/AFP
"You always have doubts because it's Ligue 1. That's the truth. You ask if he can play like that in the Champions League. He gave his response tonight. He has important qualities for us.
He moves the two centre-backs around in the opposing team. "Technically he sees things very quickly. When he drops deep -- which we ask him to do -- he helps put our game in place. He played a great match like lots of PSG players tonight, like pretty much the whole team.
It won't give him confidence as he already has huge confidence in himself. But a goal and an assist will do him well, and the coach and the club get the benefit."
Chelsea's interim manager Guus Hiddink also heralded Ibrahimovic. "He's proving already what kind of player he is. He's a personality, he's the boss in this team and they use him perfectly."