Zinedine Zidane stoked the flames of a transfer saga that is likely to dominate much of 2020’s back pages, when the French coach was asked about the possibility of bringing Paris Saint-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe to Real Madrid.
Mbappe‘s dream to play for Los Blancos has been common knowledge for a while, but it was only confirmed earlier this week by former Monaco vice-president, Vadim Vasilyev.
“It will be the player who makes the decision on his future,” Zidane explained during his pre-match press conference on Tuesday.
“At the moment he is with PSG.
“In the future, we’ll see. He has always said that his dream was to play at Real Madrid one day.”
These words are hardly going to be well received by the hierarchy at PSG, especially when Florentino Perez has done so much to foster a strong, comfortable working relationship with the Parisian giants.
However, the forward’s contract with the club ends in June of 2022, and according to a report in Le Parisien, Los Blancos are preparing an offer of 300 million euros to sign the World Cup winner.
PSG are aware of the interest in Mbappe and are cognizant of the fact that once a player enters the final two years of a contract, he is in the danger zone for potentially leaving the club.
In response to that, the French champions will present him with an offer to renew his contract and would hand him a salary of around 40 million euros per season, a deal which would provide the 20-year-old wage parity with Neymar.
Behind the scenes at Valdebebas they know that signing Mbappe will become incredibly difficult if the player signs this proposed contract extension; you could even consider it virtually impossible.
This is why they want to bring forward plans to recruit him to the immediate future, with the Spanish club no longer willing to wait until 2021, when the player would have just one year left on his contract.
Whilst Mbappe has long been a player that Florentino has admired, the moves to sign him have only really accelerated once it has been seen just how slowly Eden Hazard has acclimatized to life at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
Furthermore, Cristiano Ronaldo‘s departure has left the club without a prolific goalscorer, but Los Merengues view Mbappe as the Cristiano of the next decade.
Another aspect that isn’t really discussed, but is absolutely in play, is the redevelopment of the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, which is due to be completed by 2022.
When the stadium is reopened after the reconstruction is completed, a new era will begin for the club and Real Madrid hope Mbappe will be the iconic figure that writes the forthcoming chapters in the club’s history.
If he signed for Los Blancos, Mbappe would become the most expensive player in football history, as the deal would exceed the 222 million euros paid by the French club for Neymar.
Zidane has already taken the first step in addressing the matter publicly; now it’s up to the young Frenchman.
We’re closely watching just what the next stage of the Mbappe soap opera will be, however today it’s clear that the forward is Real Madrid‘s number one target.