Mbappé: Real Madrid in pole position for PSG star's signature
Real Madrid are readying themselves for negotiations with Paris Saint-Germain over the France striker, who has told the Ligue 1 club he wants to leave in 2021.
Kylian Mbappé's preference for a move to Real Madrid has placed Los Blancos in pole position to seal the 2021 signing of a player who is world football’s major star alongside Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Neymar.
Mbappé tells PSG he wants 2021 departure
Since joining Paris Saint-Germain in 2017, the France striker has matured as a player and consolidated his status as one of the globe’s stand-out performers - but, as The Times revealed this weekend, he has now told the Ligue 1 champions of his firm desire to seek a new challenge at the end of the season.
This has left Madrid readying themselves for negotiations with PSG next summer, as they bid to land a player who would represent the club’s major strategic investment of the next decade.
Agreeing a price for Mbappé is shaping up as the chief obstacle to securing his signature, with Madrid thought to be targeting a fee of 120 to 150 million euros for a player PSG valued at no less than 300 million 12 months ago, but who will be heading into the final year of his contract.
Madrid's capacity to pull off a marquee deal next summer has been aided by a 2020/21 close season in which they have not spent money on signings.
Mbappé attracted by Real Madrid switch
Mbappé is particularly attracted by a move to Madrid, a club that have been chasing him for the past three years. His stance leaves other suitors, such as Liverpool and Barcelona, playing catch-up on Bernabéu president Florentino Pérez.
Reds boss Jürgen Klopp is a huge admirer of the Frenchman’s explosive playing style, and Mohamed Salah or Sadio Mané could be on the way out of Anfield next summer. Meanwhile, Barça look like having to find a replacement for Messi in 2021/22, and know Mbappé would be the perfect signing.
However, Mbappé believes the best place for him to continue his growth is at Real Madrid, whose head coach, Zinedine Zidane, is idolised by the 21-year-old and is a major reason why a move to the Spanish capital appeals to him.
If no deal in 2021, free transfer in 2022?
Were the Parisians to refuse to let Mbappé leave next summer, Madrid could instead look to snap the striker up for free when his contract expires in 2022. This would enable them to match the bumper, 40-million-euros-a-year salary - after tax - that PSG were offering him as part of their attempts to persuade him to extend his stay in Paris.
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