Kylian Mbappe in Position of Power at PSG After Agreeing to New Deal

Kylian Mbappe’s decision to stay at PSG underscores the Qatar-backed club’s standing in European football, but also means the star striker is likely to wield enormous influence as it rebuilds for another Champions League attack. The 23-year-old seemed certain for a long time that he would sign for Real Madrid before being persuaded to commit to a new three-year deal with Paris Saint-Germain, the club he joined in 2017 from Monaco.

His new salary is set to be even more impressive than before and comes with an astronomical entry fee: there were reports that Real Madrid’s bid included a registration fee of 150 million euros ($154 million).

Read also: Mbappe Snoop leaves Real Madrid reeling

However, PSG are also determined to do everything in their power to provide Mbappe with a team good enough to finally win the trophy he wants most, and the Qataris have sought unsuccessfully since their arrival in Paris in 2011.

This season’s defeat in the round of 16 against Real Madrid following the collapse in the second leg was just the last humiliation for PSG in the Champions League, a streak highlighted by a 6-1 loss to Barcelona in 2017.

Five years ago, they responded to that stinging loss by signing Neymar from Barcelona, ​​in addition to the teenage Mbappe.

Now they took revenge on Real Madrid by depriving them of Mbappe.

“I’ve always said Paris was my home,” the player said after announcing his new deal and before scoring a hat-trick in PSG’s 5-0 win over Metz on Saturday in his last game of the season.

Hours later, it was reported that Leonardo’s sporting director – who had been heavily criticized by fans – had been fired.

Reports in France on Sunday suggested that PSG could now look to replace Leonardo with Luis Campos, the Portuguese recruitment expert who has helped build title-winning teams at Lille and Monaco and knows Mbappe well.

Pochettino is assigned to follow Leonardo

It is also expected to leave coach Mauricio Pochettino, despite winning the record tenth in the French League, which is equivalent to his tenth title.

“I found out about it a few minutes before the official announcement,” the Argentine admitted on Saturday when asked about the new Mbappe deal.

Pochettino has struggled to make his mark at PSG, although it is not clear who they might look to as a successor – the prospect of Zinedine Zidane appears unlikely.

Then there is the team itself.

“It’s a huge step forward, but there is still a lot of work to be done,” team captain Marquinhos admitted following Mbappe’s decision to stay.

Paris Saint-Germain’s signing of Lionel Messi has not worked out as hoped, with the former Barcelona player scoring just 11 goals in his first season in France.

Messi won the seventh Ballon d’Or last year but will turn 35 next month, while Neymar continues to struggle with his level and fitness.

Could PSG be looking to get rid of both as they make Mbappe the undisputed figurehead in their project? And if so, who would be willing and able to get Messi and Neymar out of their hands?

Too big effect?

Certainly PSG’s sensible approach is to focus more of their efforts on bringing in the best emerging players from the vast region of Paris, one of the most fertile regions for football talent in the world.

Too many PSG alumni have left early in recent years. France’s newest squad includes Mike Minan, Adrien Rabiot, Kingsley Coman, Moussa Diaby and Christopher Nkunko, all of whom are former PSG players who have either chosen or encouraged the departure.

Nkunko just won the Bundesliga Player of the Year award after scoring 35 goals for RB Leipzig.

But up front and in the middle is the World Cup winner Mbappe from the northern Paris suburb of Bondy, who finished the season with 39 goals.

It can be said that there is no more exciting scene in modern football than Mbappe running at full speed in the opponent’s defence. Its pace is amazing. He is a voracious goalscorer and the player expects to dominate the sport for years to come.

As Pochettino notes: “Killian really does identify with this city.”

The prospect of winning the Champions League for the first time with his hometown team would be tempting for Mbappe, but giving one player that power is a risk.

“The danger is that Paris Saint-Germain becomes Mbappe,” Bixente Lizarazu, the 1998 World Cup winner in France, said on a television programme.

They need to try not to adopt this rock star policy. They need to build a group.”

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