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Backheel Breakfast: Zlatan Ibrahimovic suspended 4 games

Profanely criticizing referees on-camera usually doesn't go too well.

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After a loss to Bordeaux, Zlatan Ibrahimovic went into an epic rant against the referees in front of a camera.

"F---ing bulls---. I've never seen referees as s--- as in this country. They don't even deserve PSG in this country." This got misinterpreted as him saying France is an awful country, for which he had to apologize. But he didn't apologize for what he directed at the officials, and he's been suspended for four games.

Ibrahimovic will play in the League Cup final against Bastia this weekend, but PSG will miss him for an important stretch. He's a bit lucky that his suspension comes mostly against mediocre opposition -- Nice, Lille, Metz and Nantes -- but PSG are in an incredibly tight four-team title race in Ligue 1.

PSG did okay with Ibrahimovic out early in the season, with Edinson Cavani deputizing well. They'll need him and his supporting cast to be excellent over the next month.

In the news

Raheem Sterling got heckled at Liverpool's kit launch. (Telegraph)

Cristiano Ronaldo's yellow card for diving has been rescinded. (Guardian)

But Gareth Bale is a doubt for the weekend with an ankle injury. (AS)

Diego Costa will miss the rest of the month for Chelsea. (ESPN FC)

Mehdi Benatia will miss four weeks for Bayern Munich. (Bundesliga)

Nice defender Souleymane Diawara has been arrested for trying to "exercise justice himself" after being the victim of a scam. (BBC)

Australia's FA has suspended 2nd placed Perth Glory from the playoffs for violating salary cap rules. (A-League)

Andrea Pirlo will be back to face Monaco in Champions League. (Football Italia)

Vincent Kompany might miss the Manchester Derby. (ESPN FC)

PSV's director admitted Memphis Depay is likely to leave this summer. (Mirror)

You should be reading

James Young on China snapping up the crown jewels of South American football. (Soccer Gods)

David Hytner on Tim Sherwood's return to Spurs. (Guardian)

Fun with transfer rumors

The section in which nothing should be taken seriously.

Because their new thing is signing old guys that Premier League clubs want to get rid of, Inter Milan are after Petr Cech. (Metro)

This Raheem Sterling-Theo Walcott swap rumor won't go away. (Star)

Spurs might throw down £13m to sign Benedikt Höwedes. (Mirror)

Thursday's games

Valencia drew Athletic, hurting their top four chances a bit. (Guardian)

Check out all the highlights from Copa Libertadores. (FootballManiaChannel)

What to watch this weekend (click for listings, all times ET)

Borussia Mönchengladbach vs. Borussia Dortmund (Saturday, 9:30 a.m.) - Dortmund's basically out of chances to make top four and might need to win out to make Europa League.

Tottenham Hotspur vs. Aston Villa (Saturday, 10 a.m.) - The Timpossible Dream continues.

Real Madrid vs. Eibar (Saturday, 10 a.m.) - Probably non-competitive, but all Madrid games matter.

Burnley vs. Arsenal (Saturday, 12:30 p.m.) - So we can pretend Arsenal are in a title race for a few days. Or laugh at them!

Sevilla vs. Barcelona (Saturday, 2 p.m.) - La Liga's top four race is tight, and Sevilla will be in some trouble if they lose here.

Napoli vs. Fiorentina (Sunday, 9 a.m.) - Napoli have done a great job of throwing top three away, but they're right back in the race with a win here.

Manchester United vs. Manchester City (Sunday, 11 a.m.) - Probably Manuel Pellegrini's swan song.