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Real escape with hope of progress

What the papers say
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Ibra surprised by French physicality

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been surprised by the physicality of Ligue 1, since moving to France this summer.

• Blog: PSG critics need perspective

Ibrahimovic, 31, has adapted well to the division, and is the leading scorer so far with ten goals for league leaders Paris Saint-Germain.

But after receiving the Swedish Ballon d'Or for the seventh time in eight years on Monday night he reflected on the competitive nature of French football compared to the Italian game.

''Ligue 1 is more physical than Serie A", the 6ft 5in striker told AftonBladet. "In every match, it's like everyone is as tall as me, or even taller and stronger. And they don't stop running. Anyway, there is a lack of tactical sense but I can't complain about the level of play, all leagues have their qualities and their defects."

Despite the relative ease with which he has adjusted to life in a new country the former AC Milan and Barcelona star does not feel at his best yet and feels he can improve over the course of the campaign.

"It's a good start, but I'm not yet at 100%, because I missed the preseason," he added.

"But now, I play every three days. My ban [after a red card against Saint-Etienne] offers me a little rest. I think I can still raise my level. I know I can be better. I hope to get the win with my new team and be a part of this long-term project. It's a challenge for me, many people count on me."

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