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REAL MADRID

Not signing Neymar makes Mbappé more likely for Real Madrid

Signing the Brazilian for PSG could well have negatively affected Real Madrid's real transfer objective, landing the French forward.

Every cloud has a silver lining. Or maybe Real Madrid never really wanted to sign Neymar from PSG. Who knows if the good relationship between Madrid president Florentino with Al Khelaifi allowed Real Madrid to create speculation over their interest in the player in order to make signing the forward more expensive for Barcelona. A favour, of course, which would allow PSG to get the most possible out of the operation for Neymar to return to the Camp Nou.

Real Madrid really want Mbappé

The fact is, Real Madrid not signing Neymar makes it far more likely that Florentino will be able to move to bring Mbappé to the Bernabéu in the future, which has been his main strategic plan for some time. Signing Neymar this summer would have made landing the Frenchman far harder. That explains why the Spanish club decided to take a relaxed approach to the Neymar situation, with the aim of only actually making a definitive move for the player if the conditions were absolutely right for Real Madrid and the club's finances.

As to Mbappé, Real Madrid's strategy is to stop the player renewing his contract with PSG, which finishes in 2022. Florentino considers that next summer, 2020, would be perfect to make the move to sign him, with PSG at that point forced to either renew his deal or sell him. Why? Because the next summer, 2021, Mbappé would be about to enter the last year of his deal and, as happened with Hazard, Real Madrid would be able to buy him far more cheaply.

Real Madrid had Mbappé deal done

Mbappé was close to moving to Madrid in the summer of 2017. Florentino decided not to authorise the operation, even with Mourinho publicly demanding Bale for Manchester United. German outlet De Spiegel reported that Madrid had reached a 214 million euro deal for Mbappé with Monaco. That was more than the 180 million PSG paid because of the taxes involved in the operation, which didn't apply in France. But Madrid let him slip through their fingers, because his wages would have broken their salary structure. Mbappé wanted 12 million net, according to reports. As of today the highest paid players are Ramos and Bale, both on 14.5 million euros net.

This summer no less, Mbappé began discussing his future away from PSG, saying he could be happy at PSG or with a new project. PSG then put pressure on him to release a statement saying he was staying. Emery himself, when he was coach at PSG, admitted: "Mbappé wants to go to Real Madrid and we had to stop him". There's no doubt Real Madrid's main target is the French star, not Neymar.