This is not normally my field and I’m a bit out of my comfort zone writing about this, but anyway here are a few of my thoughts regarding Kylian Mbappe possibly moving to Arsenal Football Club. I would like to point out the minus and plus points of why he would or would not come to The Arsenal. Let’s start with the minus points and save the best until last!
From the little I have seen and read about Mbappe there is no doubt he is a tremendously talented footballer. Just eighteen years old, he scored 24 goals in 42 games in all competitions last season. Which makes him the most sought after player in World football. So just about every top club in Europe are after him.
Among the clubs linked are Real Madrid, Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and now PSG as well. Every one of those clubs chasing his signature can offer Champions League, while we can only offer Europa League. Strangely, we are still short odds with the bookies.
In addition, we could be gazumped on the transfer fee by any of these clubs and all of them have deeper pockets than us, so we could not match them with regards to wages. If he is driven purely by money, we have no chance.
Then of course, there are the cynics who will say we were never really interested in him and just put the rumour in the media that we were in for him to shift boxes and season tickets, particularly after the lousy Premier and Champions League campaigns we had last season.
The last minus point is the kid is still only eighteen and would have to justify the enormous transfer fee and the pressure on him to deliver at such a young age will be massive.
Now I come to the plus points. The first one is location. Monaco will not want to sell to another French club so that probably rules out PSG. Also, London is a far more attractive proposition for foreign players than Manchester in my opinion so that may give us the edge over the two Manchester clubs.
That still leaves Chelsea and Real Madrid. Well how true this is I do not know but it has been reported in the media that Real Madrid will not pay more than £75 million for him. There is also the possibility he would not always start with Bale, Benzema and Ronaldo at the club. Also going to a club like Real Madrid the expectations will be huge, higher than if he went to any other club in Europe.
Chelsea meet all the criteria mentioned above so why would he chose Arsenal over them? Arsenal thanks to their achievements in the past due to Arsene Wenger are still a name revered in France. There is not another club with so many connections with France over the years. Not only Arsene Wenger, but also Patrick Vieira, Robert Pires and Thierry Henry to name but three.
There are numerous other French players who played for The Arsenal. Even now, we have Laurent Koscielny, Oliver Giroud and Francis Coquelin, so he would fit in easily. In fact I hope he is chatting to two of the above, whilst you are reading this, ahead of France v England this week.
The comparisons with Thierry Henry are striking. He plays in a similar style. They were both products of Clairefontaine. They both started their career at Monaco. Mbappe broke Henry’s records as Monaco’s youngest ever player and scorer. It must have crossed Mbappe and his family’s minds that Wenger could do for his career what he did for Henry’s. It wasn’t just Henry wasn’t the only forward he helped along the way in their development as players, there was also George Weah, Nicolas Anelka, Emmanuel Adebayor and Robin Van Persie.
Added to that is the way Wenger pursued Mbappe last summer, even going to Mbappe’s house to discuss with his family about moving to Arsenal. He would be the main man at Arsenal, given both the number 9 shirt and the opportunity to play up front as our main striker.
I get the impression Arsene Wenger wants him badly and is prepared to pay big money to get him. It will be even more imperative to get a marquee name in if Alexis Sanchez leaves and that looks on the cards now. If he does miss out on Mbappe the back-up plan is rumoured to be Lacazette, but Wenger will not hesitate if Mbappe becomes available this summer.
He father who is also his agent and a football coach himself seems very level headed. If they were motivated by just money Mbappe would have gone to Chelsea a long time ago when he once played for Chelsea in a trail game, but he and his father’s heads weren’t turned by the riches on offer at Stamford Bridge and he choose Monaco instead.
I am obviously not ITK, in that respect I am like Jon Snow, I know nothing but I just have a funny feeling that if Mbappe moves this summer he may well end up in North London wearing the number 9 shirt at The Arsenal, or is that just wishful thinking. I suppose we will know soon enough.