'This Mbappe is Not My Mbappe': Real Madrid President Launches Scathing Attack on PSG Star
08:55 GMT 16.06.2022 (Updated: 11:44 GMT 10.12.2022)
For months, Kylian Mbappe was expected to join Real Madrid after previously rebuffing multiple contract extension offers from Paris Saint-Germain (PSG). The Afro-French player had also reportedly agreed on personal terms with the Spanish giants. But then he decided to make a dramatic U-turn, opting to remain in Paris instead.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has finally broken his silence on Kylian Mbappe's 11th-hour decision to snub the La Liga champions last month.
The World Cup winner signed a new three-year deal with PSG, prolonging his stay at the Parc des Princes till June 2025.
Speaking to Spanish outlet El Chiringuito, Perez has now claimed that it was Mbappe's dream to play for Real and the two held discussions about his transfer to the Santiago Bernabeu.
Things were going smooth and he was all set to arrive in Spain. Suddenly, things changed in the last 15 days before PSG announced that Mbappe had agreed to stretch his contract with the French champions for three more years.
Perez even believes that Mbappe is no longer the player who wanted to play for Real, and perhaps he sold his dream for the big bucks he will receive from PSG now.
"His dream was to play at Real Madrid, we wanted to do it last August and they didn't let him leave, he kept saying he wanted to play at Madrid and like 15 days before he changed the situation," the Real Madrid president told the Spanish television network.
"This is not the Mbappe I wanted to bring, he is another one, who must have changed his dream. He changes, he is offered other things, he is pressured and he is already another footballer. There is no one at Real Madrid above the club. He is a great player, he can win more than others, but it is a collective sport and we have values and principles that we cannot change," he added.
Continuing with his criticism of the World Cup winner, Perez also took a dig at Mbappe's recent decision to stay away from endorsing brands that are associated with his national team.
Last month, the 23-year-old footballer had refused to participate in events with the sponsors of the national team, escalating tensions between him and the French Football Federation.
"The Mbappe who was going to come here is not this one. If it is, I prefer him to stay at PSG. I want the one with the dream. Impossible in three years? In three years' time we'll all be bald? This Mbappe is not my Mbappe, who refuses to do a publicity stunt with his national team... I don't want that. It could have been a slip of the tongue, but I think he was mistaken," Perez further said.
According to several French media publications, including L'Equipe, the new three-year deal with PSG will make him the highest-paid footballer in the world, ahead of his Parc des Princes colleagues Neymar and Messi.
He is set to receive $63 million in annual wages from PSG, more than double the amount he was previously getting at the club. In addition to that, PSG would pay him $155 million as a signing bonus.
Moreover, he will also have full control over his image rights, which are estimated to be worth $75 million.