Arsenal icon Arsene Wenger has a theory regarding Kylian Mbappe’s future at Paris Saint-Germain.
The France international, who is well renowned as one of world football’s best players, has less than six months remaining on his contract at Parc des Princes and has been strongly linked with a sensational move to Real Madrid.
On Tuesday evening, though, in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first-leg tie between PSG and Los Blancos, Mbappe was actually the Spanish team’s nemesis – as he bagged a superb stoppage time winner to give his side a 1-0 lead going into the second-leg at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Former Arsenal boss Wenger, when speaking to Canal+ in France last month, via the Mirror, spoke about PSG retaining confidence that they could persuade Mbappe to extend his deal in the French capital beyond this season.
“PSG had a firm offer from Real Madrid. When you turn down €180m… even for PSG, that is still a huge sum,” Wenger said.
“So, when they turned down this money, I think they said to themselves: ‘We have to have a great season, we have [Lionel] Messi and we cannot afford to lose Mbappe, we will manage to convince him to stay.”
He continued: “Time is against PSG.
“When you are in a situation like this, the longer it goes on, the more difficult it is to close it, given the experience I have.
“I have been waiting for a year and a half for PSG to renew Mbappe.
“He is the most indispensable player they have for PSG’s way of playing, but there is little time left and today the player is free to sign with whoever he wants.”
Mbappe himself addressed his future in December of last year and admitted the situation needs to be addressed sooner rather than later with the clock ticking.
“In the second half of the year, I will concentrate on the pitch, on my football,” Mbappe told La Gazzetta dello Sport, via Marca.
“It is the most important thing, especially in the second phase of the season, which is when trophies are won. So, I think this is not the time to let people talk about me. Everyone knows that I am a great player and, as such, my job is also to get people to talk about me [for what I do] on the pitch, not off it.
“So, of course, we will have to address the situation [regarding my future] because time is running out, but for the moment that is not the priority.”