Why did Mbappe join PSG and not his idol Ronaldo?

thumbnail_Mbappe transfer to PSG instead of Ronaldos Real Madrid

AS Monaco sensation Kylian Mbappe has completed his switch from the Ligue 1 champions to Paris Saint-Germain.

The 18-year-old prospect caught the eyes of many elite sides in Europe, with Real Madrid initially tipped as the frontrunner for his signature. Time elapsed and after negotiations and convincing from relations, friends and stakeholders, the Best Young Ligue 1 Player decided to join his hometown club.

Although he joins on loan in his first season, a clause inserted in his contract suggests that PSG is ‘obliged’ to pay a fee estimated to be in the region of €180 million to secure his service permanently, come next season. This is obviously due to the fact that the Parisian club already caught the attention of FFP authorities by activating Neymar Jr’s €222 million release clause last month.

As a result, breaking the bank in the same transfer window would land them deep boiling water. Recent reports even suggest that investigations are already underway. That withstanding, the Qatari-owned club is expected to make an initial payment of €135 million to AS Monaco and a further €45 million in add-ons while tying the player down to a five-year-contract.

Now it is almost an open secret that the young French prodigy will become the second most expensive player in the world after his teammate Neymar Jr. PSG is also said to have offered Mbappe a 1900% pay rise. This means that teenager’s weekly wage has significantly gone from €17,500 to €350,000, amounting to an annual salary of €16.68 million!

All the same, there is a huge chasm between himself and his idol Cristiano Ronaldo as far as player salaries are concerned. The four-time Ballon d’Or winner, following the new contract extension he signed in 2016, is paid a staggering annual salary of €32 million by Real Madrid.

Mbappe’s failed reunion with CR7: Rational or Perverse?

Since bursting onto the scenes and setting the world alight with his fine displays for AS Monaco last season, Mbappe has attracted a fair share of worldwide fame. The self-acclaimed fan of Cristiano Ronaldo, just as stated earlier, was open to a move to join his idol at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Many tipped the French prospect to become the Portuguese ace’s eventual successor assessing the similarities in their playing style. It became even close to a reality when Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane openly declared his admiration for Mbappe. The former French international occasionally reiterated his desire to oversee the development of the 18-year-old forward.

As a result, his wishes were perused by club president Florentino Perez who took the liberty in meeting the boy’s entourage to broker a deal. According to MARCA Wilfred Mbappe, father of the former AS Monaco player, suggested that Real Madrid pay his son a staggering a €14 million annual salary.

A young Mbappe surrounded by wallpapers of Cristiano Ronaldo

The proposal was debunked by Perez as senior players such as Sergio Ramos, Toni Kroos, Karim Benzema and Luka Modric are even below that specified pay-grid. During that same period, the 70-year-old businessman branded Mbappe too young to play for this current Real Madrid team.

“Mbappe is very young and a very good player, he told esRadio.

“I like all good players, but the players are 24 and only play 11 in a football match.

Florentino Perez at esRadio in June

“There are many good players that I liked and had no place.

“We will do our best. Right now we have the best template in the world, as has been shown.

“The players have to have a place and, for example, I did not see it last season with Pogba.

“Zidane has had contact with the player for several years because he has followed him, as happened with Varane.

“But at 18, few players play for Real Madrid. You have to be patient.”

In fairness, Perez’s anxiety is unerringly justified based on these two simple theories.
The first and foremost is the fact that despite Mbappe being one of the world’s brightest stars at the moment, his market value at this point is almost solely based on potential, not production. Signing him would have demeaned Real Madrid’s definition of a ‘Galactico’.

Secondly, it wouldn’t make sense to splash millions on a player who has proven himself in a single season and put Marco Asensio, a player with equal potential on the bench. The logic is similar to hiding a blue Bugatti Chiron only to buy a red one and show that off!

Furthermore, assessing Asensio’s performance and development in recent times, Real Madrid is certainly in safe hands if Cristiano Ronaldo decides to quit anytime soon.

But, before Ronaldo retires, us football fans would not pass on the prospect of him crossing path with the man who was once tipped to succeed him at the Santiago Bernabeu. At the moment it could become a reality considering Mbappe and the rest of the star-studded PSG team look like an actual force to reckon with as far as this season’s UEFA Champions League is concerned.

In an unrelated subject, another interesting scenario is how Mbappe will be received by the AS Monaco fans whenever he makes a return to the Stade Louis II. He alongside Radamel Falcao was the fulcrum in the red and white outfits’ success in Ligue 1 last season so his departure has already weakened the side despite replacements having been brought in.

Still, the motive behind Monaco allowing their most promising players to join their closest rival is quite ill-defined. Interestingly, this is not the first time Les Monegasques has decided to let a star man leave for the capital club, with Layvin Kurzawa being the latest before Mbappe to have made such a move.

The left-back, after 96 official games for the team, secured a transfer to Paris Saint-Germain for €23 million in 2015. There, he won a treble in his first season. Kurzawa has since continued his ascendancy and has frequently earned senior international call-ups.

Before him was Jérôme Rothen who established himself as a fans’ favorite, helping PSG to win trophies while avoiding relegation between 2004 and 2010 before the arrival of the ‘oil money’. All things being equal, Kylian Mbappe should feel right at home if the fates of the two aforementioned players are anything to go by.

Still, he is young and a dream move to Real Madrid can never be overruled. If anyone ever doubts that, just take a look at what happened to Neymar!


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