Spanish football expert, Graham Hunter, has revealed why Kylian Mbappe will sign for Paris Saint-Germain and not Real Madrid this summer.
They include money, playing time, Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale.
Mbappe is closing in on a move to the Ligue 1 outfit, having been heavily linked with the European champions all summer.
Hunter tells ESPN that “during the protracted negotiations, which are concluding far closer to the end of the transfer market than any of the parties wanted, there were massive amounts of horse trading”.
He added: “For example, I’m confident that one of the offers made by Madrid to Mbappe and his representatives was that, if he agreed to join, then to reassure him of extended game time this season ahead of a World Cup, the Spanish giants would try to set up a deal for Manchester United to buy Gareth Bale.
“That idea foundered when Madrid realized that Bale, who is both shrewd and stubborn about the central moves in his career, was dedicated to staying for at least one more season.
“Next, the concept of prices going up, both when there is a scarcity of commodity and when there’s a bidding market, began to hit home.
“It’s been clear for many weeks that the ultimate fee for Mbappe would be a minimum €180million, whether for outright purchase or as a guaranteed “must buy” clause at the end of the loan year, via which PSG look likely to try and vault Financial Fair Play rules.
“Madrid have that kind of financial muscle and are far from wary of showing the world that, not only can they, but they will set transfer market records.
“However,n they need to cope with the Cristiano Ronaldo factor. So touchy was he about Bale’s 2013 signing being more expensive than his existing world record that Madrid cooked up a story, which said the price for Bale didn’t supersede that of Ronaldo when he joined from Manchester United four years earlier.
“Ronaldo is also the club’s highest-paid player by some distance and so to have Mbappe come in for almost double the price for which Ronaldo joined and, at 18, get paid very nearly the same wages as the Ballon d’Or holder, was something Madrid shrewdly reckoned would be disruptive and hard for CR7 to assimilate.
“From the moment Bale arrived relations between him and Ronaldo have been distant. Not terrible, just far from optimum. As such, smart voices around the club began to wonder how the Ronaldo-Mbappe dynamic might play out if the French teenager was bought in such outlandishly expensive circumstances.”