After Anthony Martial, Kylian Mbappe is another phenomenon who seems to be lighting up the stage at Monaco. The 17-year-old recently revealed that he rejected a chance to team up with his idol Zinedine Zidane and move to Real Madrid.
Schooled at the prestigious Clairefontaine academy in France, a string of impressive performances saw him draw interest from Europe’s top clubs including Arsenal, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Chelsea, Liverpool and many more.
Real were apparently so impressed with the youngster’s performances that they drafted in Zidane to welcome him when he was invited to a week’s trial at the Bernabeu. Despite pulling out all the stops to get him to ink a deal, the youngster – who has been a fan of the club since his childhood – turned down the offer.
“I experienced that like a child who sees the greatest French player in history talk to him,” Mbappe, who signed a three-year contract with Monaco in March, told Telefoot.
“He was really honest with me. It was a great moment. In the end, I didn’t join Real Madrid because I wanted to stay in my country, I didn’t want to leave so early. It wouldn’t have worked. I chose to come to Monaco and I made the right choice,” he added.
Monaco are flying high in Ligue 1 at the moment, averaging an incredible 3 goals per game – having already scored 54 goals for the season in just 18 matches – and a central figure in this run has been the young Kylian Mbappe.
Mbappe is still only 17 but is already one of Europe’s hottest young prospects and has already broken 2 of Thierry Henry’s records in just over a season of first team football.
The Frenchman made his Ligue 1 debut against Caen last December, in the process becoming Monaco’s youngest ever debutant aged just 16 years and 347 days. Two months later, he got himself into the history books again, nudging Henry into second place on the list of Monaco’s youngest goalscorers.
Fast, direct, blessed with an innate finishing ability and a change of pace that flummoxes even the best Ligue 1 defenders, plenty of parallels have been drawn with Henry.
Asked of this comparison, Mbappe replied, “It’s always flattering to be compared to great players, but I think each player wants to write their own history. Titi [Henry] wrote his, I hope to write my own. I hope it’ll be better or as good as his, but I hope it’ll be different. Each has his own.”
If this season is an indicator of the things to come, the young French forward will go on to have a vastly successful career and may indeed end up making his dream move to Real Madrid someday.