Real Madrid remain keen on signing Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe in the summer, but their plan hinges on the 22-year-old World Cup winner continuing to delay any decision on his future until the end of the season.
Mbappe has averaged almost a goal per game in Ligue 1 since making his €180m transfer to PSG permanent in 2018 and is widely recognised as one of the players most likely to replace Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi as the best in the world in the coming years.
The Frenchman has long been wanted by Real Madrid and his future at PSG is becoming increasingly uncertain due to his expiring contract, which now has less than 18 months left to run. That situation alone is why his transfer value has started to fall.
According to AS, Real have everything in place to launch ‘Operation Mbappe’, that old cliché of the Spanish transfer gossip.
The first thing Los Blancos need is for Mbappe not to commit his future to PSG by continuing to hold off on signing the offer on the table for the French champions. Penning that deal would see his value soar, but as it stands PSG are at a disadvantage because of the threat of free agency in 2022.
Offsetting the cost
AS explains that despite taking a major hit as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, Real have a financial plan in place to land Mbappe. That depends on raising between €100m and €150m by selling the likes of Gareth Bale, Marcelo, Isco, Luka Jovic, Brahim Diaz and Dani Ceballos. The rest of the money needed would then be financed with a loan, with banks seemingly happy to play ball.
As a result of getting several higher earners off the wage bill and with the hope that next season will revenue increase if fans can return to the Bernabeu, it is also said that Mbappe’s expected net salary demands of €21m per season would not be an issue.
It seems to have been made clear that Real’s attempts to sign Mbappe must be exempt from any future efforts to negotiate player salary cuts. Los Blancos are banking, perhaps literally in this sense, on not having to go down that route in the hope that normality resumes next season.
Balancing the books at PSG
A separate AS report claims the chances of Mbappe leaving PSG could be strengthened by new coach Mauricio Pochettino’s interest in bringing Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero to Parc des Princes.
PSG have been hit by the pandemic just like every other club and signing both Messi and Aguero without any sort of concession like selling Mbappe or Neymar would be financially impossible.
That Mbappe has resisted a new contract, although it must be pointed out that Neymar is also due to be out of contract in 2022, is positioned as a ‘starting ramp’ for PSG to balance the books.