REAL MADRID

Why Mbappé is so close but so far away from Real Madrid

The PSG star remains the name at the top of Real Madrid's shopping list but the France forward will be difficult to land and may be out of reach for Florentino Pérez.

Why Mbappé is so close but so far away from Real Madrid
GONZALO FUENTES REUTERS

Kylian Mbappé remains the name at the top of the wanted list for Real Madrid. He finished his contract with PSG in 2022 and is the attacker Florentino Pérez wants to build his new project around. The current generation's contributions include four Champions League in five seasons including three in a row with Zidane. The current coronavirus crisis is shaping Madrid's plan but Mbappé is still their man; here are the reasons that pull him closer to the Bernabéu and pull him further away.

The reasons that bring Mbappé close

- PSG have halted his contract renewal.

Mbappé has rejected contracts renewals twice now in recent months and made him the only player they would not sell. Now, curiously, it's PSG who have stopped talks with the global pandemic sending everything into the air regarding football's future. This, of course, is a positive for Madrid. Ideally, Mbappé would not renew and Madrid could either get him at a discount or sign him on a free when his deal expires.

- Al Khelaifi wants to reduce the team's wage bill.

This is something inevitable across the board for European teams. Clubs have lost a lot of money for various reasons such as no broadcasting rights, match-day sales etc. PSG have massive amounts of money behind them but UEFA and FIFA are paying close attention to financial fair play rules. The problem is, however, that his wages are not astronomically high. He earns €20 million a year given that they signed him when he was just 19.

- The PSG project has lost a step.

The economic crisis will affect many clubs who do not have strong academies to pick up the slack. PSG is made up of superstars from all over the world. That could impact their chances of keeping this team together and winning the Champions League - their holy grail. Mbappé's goal is to win the Ballon d'Or one day and that is hard to see at PSG. At Real Madrid, it is.

And the reasons why he remains a difficult transfer

- Real Madrid will be affected too.

It's obvious that whatever way the coronavirus crisis hits PSG, Real Madrid will also feel it. They will not get into any deal unless the numbers make perfect sense. Real Madrid is not a bottomless pit and the profits will fall. We are still yet to see by how much and how they will affect transfer strategy.

- Mbappé's salary will need improving.

Real Madrid let Mbappé escape in the summer of 2017 when they had him all but tied up according to Football Leaks. They did not agree to the move because he asked for €12 million a year when he was just 19. That would have shattered the pay-scale at the club. Ramos and Bale, for example, are on €14.5 net now and Madrid rejected the chance to sign him on that much money.

- More money in publicity for the player.

They might not be able to raise his salary by very much but what they can offer is much more visibility if he goes for it. Real Madrid are the most well-known club in the world and all of the footballers take advantage of that. Mbappé would be front and centre of talk of Ballon d'Or and could increase the money he makes from sponsorships too.