SOCCER

Kylian Mbappé disappointed Real Madrid move falls through

After a move to Real Madrid did not materialise, Kylian Mbappé was asked about the speculation over a Bernabéu switch.

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Mbappe disappointed to miss out on Real Madrid move

Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappé admitted he was "disappointed" not to join LaLiga powerhouse Real Madrid after his failed off-season transfer.

With his contract expiring at the end of the 2021-22 campaign, Mbappé was heavily tipped to swap PSG for Madrid, who have made no secret of their admiration.

However, a transfer did not materialise as Ligue 1 giants PSG – still determined to re-sign the France international – refused to part with Mbappé.

Mbappé set to become free agent

Madrid are expected to sign Mbappé as a free agent at the end of the current campaign but the 22-year-old was asked about his frustration at the failed swich to the Santiago Bernabéu.

"Disappointed with not leaving? A little," Mbappé told Amazon while speaking to France great Thierry Henry.

"It's not easy, but whatever happened, I was going to play for a great club. I'm Parisian, I feel great, but I wanted to discover something else."

Speculation had mounted about Mbappé's future at Euro 2020, when the forward missed the decisive spot-kick in France's last-16 penalty shoot-out defeat to Switzerland.

Mbappé failed to score at the Euros and provided one assist as world champions France fell well short.

France forward wanted to leave PSG

"During the Euros they asked me a lot of questions. I talked a lot with my parents, I knew I wanted to go out," Mbappé said. "My parents told me to concentrate on the pitch. Maybe I was putting too much energy into other things."

Mbappé, who joined PSG from French rivals Monaco initially on loan in 2017, has won three Ligue 1 titles with the capital club.

PSG top Ligue 1 this season, boasting an 11-point advantage over Rennes after 17 rounds.

Despite PSG's lead, Mbappé, Neymar and off-season signing Lionel Messi are yet to fully play a cohesive attacking brand of football.

"We are aware that the three of us must do more, we cannot hide, we assume it," Mbappé said.

"If I am the boss? It is difficult when you are in a team with Neymar and Messi, it would be audacious to say it, although it matters little."

Among Europe's best

Mbappé has been involved in 15 goals this season in Ligue 1 (seven goals, eight assists), with only Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski (17), Madrid forward Karim Benzema (19) and Liverpool star Mohamed Salah (22) doing better in the top five European league.

In the 1-1 draw against Lens, Mbappé was decisive in coming off the bench for the first time in the top flight since 5 December 2020 (goal against Montpellier).