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Luis Enrique bids farewell to Mbappe: “His next destination is clear. I understand his decision.”

The France captain has entered the final few weeks of his Paris Saint-Germain career but what now for both club and player?

Kylian Mbappe

 

Kylian Mbappe confirmed one of the worst kept secrets in football last week, posting a video on his social media channels to announce he would be leaving Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season.

PSG had offered him a 12-month contract extension but the France captain has his heart set on a new adventure. He leaves quite the legacy at the Parc des Princes having won six Ligue 1 titles – the most recent coming this season – as well as three Coupes des France which could become four next weekend.

He also departs as the club’s all-time leading goalscorer with 256 to his name.

What have the club made of his departure?

Perhaps tellingly, club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi was not mentioned in Mbappe’s farewell video, a sign that their relationship has become increasingly fractured during exit negotiations.

Coach Luis Enrique remains a big fan of the 25-year-old though and says he understands the player’s desire to try something new after seven years in Paris.

The former Barcelona boss said: “All I can say is marvellous things about Kylian Mbappe as a footballer and as a person.

“I understand his decision. He has been here for seven years and leaves as a club legend. He has given everything to this club, and this club has given him everything as well.

“I wish him all the best for the future. I have been proud to have him in this team. He has helped us and is a leader, and he has done so with a smile on his face.”

Where next for Mbappe?

It’s Real Madrid! Although no official announcement has been made, Mbappe will play for Los Blancos next season.

As Luis Enrique said: “He has not yet said where he is going but his next destination is clear.”

Madrid are holding off on confirming his switch to the Santiago Bernabeu as they do want any distractions ahead of the Champions League final against Borussia Dortmund on June 1.

As soon as that game is done, and most likely prior to the European Championship getting underway on June 14, expect to see Mbappe donning a white shirt.

Where does it leave PSG?

According to Luis Enrique, in a strong position to push on.

“It doesn’t change anything in terms of our general outlook, everything will stay the same,” he said.

“Regardless of those who are here or who are absent, my aim is to be stronger next season.

“PSG will continue to be a great team and we’ll get even better. We will bring in players with a strong mentality and players who identify with the club, that’s how life works.”

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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