French football star Kylian Mbappe has told Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) he will leave the Ligue 1 champions when his contract ends next year, French sports newspaper L’Equipe and international media organisations have reported.
According to Monday’s reports, Mbappe left the PSG hierarchy stunned by his decision to not take up the option of a 12-month extension on his contract, which he presented in a formal letter, and follows Lionel Messi recently announcing his departure from PSG to Major League Soccer (MLS) side Inter Miami in the United States.
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PSG now appears set to have to weigh up whether to sell the 24-year-old forward – who scored a hat-trick for France during its defeat by Argentina in the 2022 World Cup final – or see him leave the club for nothing at the end of his current deal in June 2024, according to news reports.
Reports in France had suggested PSG was hopeful for an extension to Mbappe’s contract.
Mbappe was in a similar situation last year when he was linked with a move to Spanish giants Real Madrid, only to sign a contract extension with PSG.
Real Madrid could now step up their interest in Mbappe as they look to bolster the forward line after veteran Karim Benzema’s move to Al-Ittihad in Saudi Arabia.
There is also uncertainty about the future of another PSG star: Brazil’s Neymar.
But the apparent departure of Mbappe would be the greatest loss to PSG, given he is a national icon in France and widely considered one of the few players capable of taking over from Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as football’s biggest star.
Mbappe hoped to help PSG win its first Champions League title but the team suffered another disappointment in European football’s top competition, which Manchester City went on to win by beating Inter Milan 1-0 in the final on Saturday.
Mbappe has won five French league titles with PSG and was a World Cup winner with France in 2018.