PARIS (AP) Paris Saint-Germain striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic was voted the French league’s player of the year by his fellow professionals for the second straight season.
Ibrahimovic beat off competition from teammates Thiago Silva and Thiago Motta and Monaco midfielder James Rodriguez to win the top award in French football on Sunday.
The Sweden striker has scored 40 goals in all competitions for PSG this season, including a chest-high backheel flick in a 4-0 win over Bastia in October which was voted most beautiful goal of the year. The Parisian club clinched the French league title on Wednesday.
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”I believe this was my best season,” Ibrahimovic said. ”I think our team had a great season and I hope it will continue next year.”
Ibrahimovic was also selected in the French league’s team of the year alongside five teammates.
PSG’s Salvatore Sirigu was picked as goalkeeper while Toulouse right back Serge Aurier, PSG center back Thiago Silva, Saint-Etienne defender Loic Perrin and Monaco leftback Layvin Kurzawa formed the back four.
PSG duo Marco Verratti and Thiago Motta joined Monaco playmaker James Rodriguez in midfield. Lyon forward Alexandre Lacazette and PSG striker Edinson Cavani completed the attacking trio.
Lille coach Rene Girard was voted coach of the year, fending off competition from PSG’s Laurent Blanc, Monaco’s Claudio Ranieri and Lyon’s Remi Garde. With one round left, Lille sits in third place in the French league, behind champion PSG and Monaco.
Only two other players have twice won the top award in French football: former Bordeaux striker Pedro Pauleta and Eden Hazard when he was with Lille.
Past winners of the award include David Ginola, Zinedine Zidane, Didier Drogba and Karim Benzema.