Football

Published: Wednesday February 5, 2014 MYT 6:37:01 AM
Updated: Wednesday February 5, 2014 MYT 6:38:39 AM

Ibrahimovic double sends PSG into League Cup final

Paris Saint-Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates with team mates after scoring against FC Nantes during their French League Cup semi-finals soccer match at the Beaujoire stadium in Nantes, February 4, 2014. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

Paris Saint-Germain's Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates with team mates after scoring against FC Nantes during their French League Cup semi-finals soccer match at the Beaujoire stadium in Nantes, February 4, 2014. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

PARIS (Reuters) - Zlatan Ibrahimovic struck a last-minute winner to put Paris St Germain in the French League Cup final with a 2-1 win at Nantes on Tuesday having opened the scoring as they boosted their hopes of a maiden domestic double.

The Sweden striker netted after five minutes with a splendid 25-metre strike and sent the Paris club through to the April 19 showpiece match at the Stade de France with a last-gasp header after Olivier Veigneau had equalised in the 81st.

Ligue 1 leaders PSG, who are five points clear of second-placed Monaco, will face the winners of Wednesday's second semi-final between Olympique Lyon and second-division Troyes.

It will the fifth League Cup final appearance for PSG, who have won the trophy three times.

"As soon as we conceded the goal, my team said to itself that we could not afford playing extra time and we went for the game," PSG coach Laurent Blanc told broadcaster France 2.

The visitors, who had thrashed Nantes 5-0 at home in the league two weeks ago, went ahead when the inspired Ibrahimovic struck a half-volley into the net after the ball had been mistakenly kicked into his path by Nantes goalkeeper Remy Riou.

PSG pushed for a second but Riou made amends for his error by parrying efforts from Thiago Silva and Ezequiel Lavezzi.

Nantes, who barely touched the ball in the first half but saw Marco Verratti save a Papy Djiloboji header on his goal line, staged a fightback after the break.

The hosts were rewarded when Veigneau fired the ball home from a low cross by substitute Georges-Kevin Nkoudou.

However, their hopes of reaching the final were dashed nine minutes later when the magical Ibrahimovic powered home a header following a superb cross from Brazilian Lucas Moura.

(Reporting by Gregory Blachier; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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