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Jul 17, 2013

PSG president says Ibra staying put

Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al Khelaifi has given short shrift to speculation that Zlatan Ibrahimovic could leave the French champions.

Ibrahimovic scored 30 league goals in his first season in France
Ibrahimovic and Cavani could be strike partners next season.

Ibrahimovic, 31, is reportedly unhappy with the departure of coach Carlo Ancelotti, and has been linked with a reunion with the Italian at Real Madrid, as well as a move to Manchester City, in recent days.

- Train: Ibra window for Real?

However, as the Sweden international striker prepared to join pre-season training under new PSG boss Laurent Blanc for the first time on Thursday, Al Khelaifi stressed his intention to keep him to play alongside new signing Edinson Cavani.

"Ibra's staying - that's certain. And he'll play with Cavani," the president told Le Parisien, explaining to L'Equipe that both Ibrahimovic and his ex-AC Milan team-mate Thiago Silva would be staying put.

"I've already said yes [they will be staying]," he said. "Thiago's agent has clearly said it. He can't be more clear. Same thing for Ibra. The project is going to continue, that's for sure."

Speaking at Tuesday's presentation of Cavani to the media, Al Khelaifi emphasised that Blanc would have the final say on whether or not Ibrahimovic was paired with Cavani.

Meanwhile, PSG have stepped up their interest in in-demand Lille full-back Lucas Digne, with L'Equipe reporting that they have offered the 19-year-old a five-year deal.

The paper added that Digne, who would initially be employed as cover for Maxwell on the left side of defence before eventually succeeding the Brazilian, was seeking guarantees about his playing time before committing to an agreement.

With PSG's reported current offer of €13 million some € 2 million short of Lille's valuation, Digne may see himself overtaken by Wolfsburg's Switzerland international Ricardo Rodriguez, 20, on PSG's list of priorities.

"We're working on bringing other players in,” Al Khelaifi said. "The negotiations are confidential. I'm not in a position to say what's happening. We don't work like that."

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