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Farewell Mbappé: From jeers to cheers on his last day in front of PSG fans

PSG's all-time record goalscorer bid farewell to the Parc des Princes on Sunday. He signed off with a goal but it was not universal acclaim.

Kylian Mbappe

 

Kylian Mbappe played his last game for Paris Saint-Germain at the Parc des Princes on Sunday. Befitting his time at PSG, his send-off was a mixture of emotions and reactions. Why is he not universally loved by the fans given his record in the French capital?

Why would anyone boo Mbappe given what he has done for the club?

The saying may be ‘hell hath no fury like a woman scorned’ but an angry woman pales into insignificance next to a football fan who claims to have been wronged.

Add in the fact that PSG supporters are among the most fickle in the game, and you start to understand why the France captain was not granted a heartfelt send off by some of the club’s followers.

In their defence, there was an inevitability about Mbappe’s announcement on Friday that he was to leave the club at the end of the season and not accept the offer of a 12-month extension.

His time in the capital has been riddled with speculation, move and counter move that has finally culminated in a parting of the ways.

It might be the fans feel this is the right time for both parties to say au revoir.

How did the day start for Mbappe?

Not great! When his name was read out on the public address system, there were loud boos. However, they were soon drowned out by cheers when the club’s ultras unfurled a giant tifo adorned with a picture of Mbappe performing his traditional arms-crossed goal celebration. Their act was recognised by Mbappe who went over to show his appreciation.

Was Mbappe inspired or inhibited in his final game?

Largely inspired, even if his team-mates weren’t. Mbappe scored with a lovely finish after eight minutes to put the hosts ahead but it didn’t prevent PSG from slipping to a 3-1 defeat at home to Toulouse in what coach Luis Enrique described as his side’s worst performance of the season.

His goal was Mbappe’s 256th for the club, extending his PSG record even further.

What happened after the final whistle?

Of course, all eyes were on Mbappe but the club were also celebrating a 12th Ligue 1 title – and 50th major trophy – after what has been a largely impressive season under Luis Enrique.

The players thanked the fans as is customary before lifting the trophy but the only nod to Mbappe’s departure was an extended reading of his name from the stadium announcer.

Given the 25-year-old didn’t acknowledge club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi in his farewell video, perhaps it was no surprise.

What’s next for Mbappe?

It is widely expected the former Monaco man will join Real Madrid this summer. However, any announcement is not anticipated before Madrid play Borussia Dortmund – PSG’s conquerors in the semi-finals – in the Champions League final at Wembley on June 1.

Speaking at the Ligue 1 end of season awards, when he was named Player of the Year for a fifth season in a row, Mbappe said: “It’s a chapter of my life that is ending. Ligue 1 has been a major part of my career.

“Now I’m turning a new page in my life. What comes next is very exciting, but that’s another matter. I want to thank my family, who’ve always supported me in the good and bad times. I know it was very important for my father that I made history in Ligue 1 before leaving, and I think, with humility, that I’ve done that.”

Mbappe still has two Ligue 1 games to play, at Nice and Metz, before they take on Lyon in the Coupe de France final on May 25.

After that comes the European Championship with World Cup finalists France – Mbappe, of course, scored a hat-trick in the defeat to Argentina in the title-game in Qatar – expected to challenge this summer in Germany.

Picture of Jon Fisher

Jon Fisher

Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.

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