In an interview with Marca tonight, Kylian Mbappe had many ‘clarifications’ on his decision this weekend of renewing with Paris Saint-Germain. We’ve included the Real Madrid related bits below.
On choosing between Liverpool, Real Madrid, and PSG
“Yes, I am sincere. I have spoken to Liverpool because [red] is my mother’s favorite color and my mother loves Liverpool. Why? I don’t know, ask her [Laughs]. We met with them a few years ago, when I was at Monaco, it’s a great club... Now we talk to them a bit, but not much... In the end it was between Real Madrid and PSG. Everyone knows it: last year I wanted to go to Real Madrid. I thought it was a good decision to leave last year, but now it’s different because I’m a free agent, I’m French and I know I’m important to the country, and when you’re important to the country you have to think not only about football, but also your life.
After my degree I will be in France, I will live here with my family and friends. The only thing I can do is thank all the Real Madrid fans, the whole club, because they gave me all the love possible and it was incredible because I’ve never played there. Only 14 years old, for a week, but it is an incredible club and I wish them good luck for the Champions League final.”
Is his dream still to play for Real Madrid?
“I think it’s disrespectful to say that my dream is to play for Real Madrid after signing my contract just a few days ago.
“The dream is fine, but today I am only focused on my new contract, in the present. You never know what can happen... I have a three-year contract, but for the moment I have to focus on my year at PSG.”
On his trip to Madrid with Achraf Hakimi
“It was not a mistake. I was in Madrid because Achraf told me to please, please go to Madrid with him. He would probably do it again. I didn’t go to Madrid for people to talk. I went with Achraf on a private flight, we changed our names and everything so no one would see me and then we went to a restaurant and someone told me. But I didn’t say: “Yes, I’m going to Madrid so that everyone can see me.” I went directly, secretly, with my friends and Achraf paid for the trip so that my name wouldn’t even be on it and people wouldn’t see me at the airport. I went to the hotel, I relaxed, then I went to the restaurant and everyone saw me. But it was for Achraf.”
On the accusations that his decision was based on money
“I am a bit sad because since I started playing football I showed everyone that I had the patience to play. I have always talked about football, titles, important games... never about money. People can talk about what they want, but everyone knows me. I have spoken with everyone at Real Madrid, I have spoken with PSG and they know that I have never discussed money with the president, with Florentino Pérez, or with Nasser Al Khelaifi. My lawyer talked about money a bit, as did my mother, but I didn’t. I talk about sport because I talk on the pitch. My money goes to my account, I look at it a bit but I don’t care. I am here to win titles, to show that I am the best and to be happy. I think right now I’m happy.”
On Karim Benzema’s Instagram story. Did he see it?
“Yes, yes, and I saw several Real Madrid players posting things. These things are like that, I have nothing to say. Of course, when I go to the France team I will explain to Karim why I have stayed at PSG because we have a good relationship.”