The European football season may be over, but Kylian Mbappe is still on the lips of almost everyone; not for emerging as the best league in the 2021/22 season in Ligue 1 for the third consecutive time, but for what many considered as ‘betrayal’ after giving Real Madrid his word to join them in the summer.
And Real players are also not left out among those who would possibly point fingers at Mbappe’s nose if they saw him on the street. The club president, Florentino Perez, who is the 15th and 18th president of the Los Merengues, is famous for assembling the world’s most expensive footballers known as ‘Galacticos’, was confident the French star would be the latest acquisition at the club.
The way football politics work at Real and Barcelona too; the two biggest clubs in Spain, presidents are mostly appointed by the stars they promise to bring to their club during lobby for election. Perez once had David Beckham, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo, Micheal Owen, and the phenomenon, Ronaldo De Lima, play together at Real. His desire to kick-start another era with the purchase of former Chelsea forward, Eden Hazard, in 2019, for a fee above £150million, has grossly failed. The 75-year-old engineer and former politician would have thought of starting that idea again with Mbappe.
Perez, who has been in charge of Real now since June 1, 2009, was so fantasized about the 23-year-old in the white and white jersey of the club for years to come after several conversations with the 2018 World Cup winner. The former politician could not hold it to himself and he informed the players after one of their Champions League heroics this season, that the youngster would be moving to the club from Paris Saint-Germain. Several big sports websites across the world had also reported that he was heading to the Spanish capital.
However, days before the forward revealed his decision last weekend to stay at PSG for another three seasons, Perez had again informed players that the Mbappe deal was off, which reportedly infuriated them, with some of them accusing the Frenchman of betraying the club. Since then, it has been difficult for the players to put disappointment behind them.
Two Real senior players; Karim Benzema and Luka Modric, have publicly reacted to the development in the build-up to the Champions League final against Liverpool coming up this weekend.
In an interview, Benzema said that he is not angry with Mbappe, his forward partner on the French national team, over his decision, but added that it was not the time “to talk about those little things.”
When asked about his contract renewal at the club during a presser, Modric, 36, promised that he would not betray Real as Mbappe did.
The final of this season’s Europe top club competition will hold this Saturday at the beautiful Stade des France, right in Mbappe’s backyard, with the player saying he would be at the venue to cheer Real to victory.
Coincidentally, Real’s opponents in the game, The Reds, were also in talks with the former Monaco player to move to Anfield in the summer, but they were the least on the list of options for Mbappe.