How many goals has Kylian Mbappe scored for France?
At the age of 23, Kylian Mbappé has some staggering statistics for France, bettering the likes of Platini, Fontaine, Trezeguet, Henry and Benzema.
Kylian Mbappé once again demonstrated why he is widely considered to be the best player in the world at the moment against South Africa, scoring twice, assisting another and turning in a complete performance against the Bafana Bafana in a 5-0 win for Les Bleus. Those two strikes took the PSG forward’s tally for France to 26, and Mbappé is still only 23 years old. Little wonder that Real Madrid, Barcelona and the rest of Europe’s top clubs are desperate to lure him away from the Parc des Princes this summer. Mbappé now has as many goals for Les Bleus as Sylvain Wiltord and is over halfway to Thierry Henry’s mark of 51.
The former Arsenal, Juventus and Barcelona striker sits atop the all-time standings for Les Bleus, closely followed by Olivier Giroud (48) and Antoine Griezmann (42) who have both surpassed the total scored by arguably France’s greatest-ever player, Michel Platini (41).
What stands out is the speed with which Mbappé is charging towards the upper reaches of the historical scoring chart. At just 23 he has 26 goals. By comparison when Karim Benzema, who is fifth in the standing, was the same age he had managed 11. When Platini was 23 he had found the net for France on 10 occasions while Henry had scored only eight. Griezmann and Giroud, incredibly, has still not opened their accounts for Les Bleus when they were Mbappé’s age.
Mbappé has reached his 26 goals in 54 caps, meaning the PSG forward is worth just under a goal every two games for France. Henry required 123 caps to reach 51, Giroud has 112, Griezmann 104 and Benzema – who was frozen out of the Les Bleus set-up for several years – 94. The only comparable scoring rates in France history are Platini (41 in 72 caps), David Trezeguet (34 in 71), Jean-Pierre Papin (30 in 54) and the great Just Fontaine, who scored 30 times in just 21 games.
Mbappé: "I believe I can get there a lot quicker than people think"
If Mbappé keeps scoring at his current rate of 0.48 goals per game, by the time he reaches 100 caps he will have added 22 more, taking his theoretical tally to 48, the same number as Giroud. Given he made his debut almost exactly five years ago, he will still only be 28 years old. And taking into account the number of international games in the modern era and assuming he stays fit, there is little to suggest he may not overtake Henry even before then.
“Of course the record is an objective. I’ve always wanted to be number one in everything, with France and at club level. There’s still a long way to go. What Titi Henry did nobody else has managed to do. But I believe I can get there a lot quicker than people think,” Mbappé told French broadcaster TF1 after the South Africa game.