As Paris Saint Germain prepares for several major matches, the team faces a big setback with forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic getting suspended for four games in the French Ligue 1.

Ibrahimovic got the punishment following allegedly delivering harsh comments against referee Lionel Jaffredo after his team’s 3-2 loss against Bordeaux last March 15. The forward was caught on television speaking to the official, where he is said to have eventually mouthed “F–ing wake up — we’re not playing in the amateurs. Wake up! I have never seen that in 15 years in my career, such a referee in this s— country. [You] don’t even deserve PSG to be in this country.”

The Swedish player’s remark was met with outcry from fans and several prominent political figures, including National Front head Marine le Pen, who said that Ibrahimovic should leave the country if he is not happy with it. The French sports ministry also asked the 33-year old player to apologize, to which he obliged.

PSG sporting director Oliver Letang defended IUbrahimovic, saying that his comments were not directed to the referee, the league’s disciplinary commission. “He has been sanctioned because of the offensive nature and rudeness of his words,” stressed commission president Sebastien Deneux.

Ibrahimovic also got a one game ban after an altercation with a Saint-Etienne player during a match in January, which adds to the initially three that was handed to him for this incident. The suspension means that he will be missing on the games against Niles, Lille, Metz, and Nantes.

Despite the suspension, Ibrahimovic found something to celebrated as he netted his 100th goal for PSG during their 4-1 win against Saint-Etienne on Wednesday. He scored the point in the 20th minute of the match, coming from a dive in the penalty box. His milestone for PSG comes in just three years after joining the team. Ibrahimovic then went on to ccomplete a hat trick that, along with teammate Ezequiel Lavezzi, dominated Saint Etienne.

 

Paul Koroma

I learned all about life with a ball at my feet. Soccer allows me to push the limitation of creativity and express myself without saying a word. Soccer is my addiction. I train. I play, and I repeat every single day.

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