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Al-Khelaifi: Cavani perfect replacement for Ibrahimovic

Edinson Cavani can step into the void left by Zlatan Ibrahimovic and lead the line for Paris Saint-Germain, says president Nasser Al-Khelaifi.

Ibrahimovic has been a revelation in the French capital over the past four seasons, scoring 156 goals in all competitions to help them become the dominant force in Ligue 1.

The Sweden international’s contract at PSG will expire at the end of the month, with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar and Alexandre Lacazette linked with replacing him.

However, Al-Khelaifi is confident Cavani – who has occupied more of a wide role due to Ibrahimovic’s presence – is more than capable of scoring the goals PSG need to maintain their superiority.

“I sometimes feel that the media does not see things well,” he told Le Parisien. 

“He [Ibrahimovic] was a scorer, a great scorer. [But] Cavani is one of the best in the world. Watch his goals throughout his career. Cavani is one of the best in this position, why look elsewhere?

“It is a change of the project. We will recruit players who bring more to the team. We will look for players who will help the team to take the next steps on the field.

“We need players who eat the grass, and are ready to die for the club and this jersey.”

Hatem Ben Arfa has been linked with a switch to Parc des Princes after a sensational season with Nice, the former Newcastle United playmaker scoring 18 goals in 2015-16, and Al-Khelaifi is a fan.

“He is a great player in French football. He has grown mentally, he has a lot of talent and a lot of quality,” Al-Khelaifi added.

“Some people wonder if he can play at a big club, in my opinion the answer is yes. He’s an option, but there are others.”

Fri 3 Jun, 2016
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