Mbappé on the Ballon d'Or: “I know Messi had his eye on me"

The PSG star has spoken to France Football after recieving the nomination for French Footballer of the Year for the second consecutive year.

Mbappé on the Ballon d'Or: “I know Messi had his eye on me"

Two days after turning 21, Kylian Mbappé has been named the French Footballer of the Year 2019 by France Football, becoming the first-ever layer to scoop the award on two consecutive occasions.

Speaking to the French media outlet upon receiving the award, the PSG star said: “People think that Mbappé has changed, but that's a lie. I play to be decisive and to be important for my team. Before, I passed the ball to do the best for the team, but now, they pass me the ball more and I take the opportunity.”

Although his presence has not been confirmed, Mbappé admitted that he would like to play at the Olympic Games if given the opportunity. 

"Of course I want to go to the Olympic Games. But it will never be at the expense of the European Championship. I will talk about it soon with [PSG sporting director] Leonardo,” he said.

Mbappé with PSG team mate Neymar.

Mbappé on Neymar and Messi

Speaking about his relationship with Neymar, the PSG striker wanted to dispel any rumours about a rivalry with his Brazilian team mate.

“When I arrived in Paris, there was no debate. Neymar is the star of the team. Then I won the World Cup and there were certain rumours about whether we were getting on badly. I told him I'm always here to help him on the team,” the 21-year-old striker told France Football.

The France international also spoke about competing with Lionel Messi for the Ballon d’Or, an award also bestowed by France Football. Messi scooped his sixth Ballon d’Or earlier this month, but Mbappé feels he is now in a position to challenge the Argentine star and Cristiano Ronaldo’s decade-long dominance of the prestigious individual accolade.

“I know that Messi had his eye on me,” he said. “I realised that I could fight for the Ballon d’Or title. But in front was Messi. There were days when I scored three goals and then he would score four. I remember that I spoke to Ousmane Dembélé and said: 'it wasn't possible. Does he do it on purpose?'"