Sources: PSG positive about latest Mbappe talks
Talks between Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser al Khelaifi and Kylian Mbappe‘s representatives in Doha are moving in a positive direction, sources have told ESPN.
The Ligue 1 giants are doing everything in their power to keep Mbappe at the club and the latest talks could represent a huge turning point in the battle between PSG and Real Madrid to secure the services of the 2018 World Cup winner next season.
Mbappe’s mother, Fayza Lamari, who is in charge of dealing with her son’s contractual situation, travelled to the Middle East with her youngest son Ethan this week for a vacation and to continue negotiating with PSG.
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Al-Khelaifi is there full time this month and sources say that Mbappe’s mother also could meet the Emir of Qatar, who owns PSG. Sources have told ESPN that following her stay in Doha, Lamari plans to travel to Madrid to meet with representatives in the Real front office.
The presumptive 2021-22 LaLiga champions still feel like they are the favourites to recruit Mbappe on a free transfer this summer, but PSG are now also confident that they can persuade him to stay in Paris.
One major sticking point for Mbappe is his image rights, something that has been discussed at length this week in Doha, according to sources. The 23-year-old wants to control 100% of his image rights so he can decide the brands and companies he works with. Sources say the Ligue 1 leaders are ready to grant that request in the same fashion as they did with Lionel Messi.
However, Real Madrid has a policy of maintaining 50% of the image rights for each player at the club and it would be unprecedented for Los Blancos president Florentino Perez to accept Mbappe’s request.
The other thing the Mbappe contingent is inquiring about is how much PSG will invest in the summer to make their team more competitive. Sporting director Leonardo and manager Mauricio Pochettino — whose futures at the Parc des Princes beyond this season are uncertain — are already working on the squad for 2022-23 and the club is promising an improved team with Mbappe the star at the centre of it.
Reports in France in March said the club would give Mbappe the captain’s armband as an incentive to stay and fulfill his dream of lifting PSG’s first ever Champions League trophy.
In private, though, Mbappe says that he has not decided yet where he will be playing next season, and sources have said he is no rush to tip his hand and could wait until June or later to make up his mind on where he decides to play.