As one of the best footballers on the planet, transfer speculation around Kylian Mbappe has been a yearly occurrence ever since he burst onto the scene as a 17-year-old. This year, however, the speculation is very different as both the player himself and his club, PSG, have agreed that it is time for the Frenchman to leave the capital.
The 24-year-old signed a bumper new contract at the club last summer, however, that deal was only an extension of his previous one and ends next summer. The lack of long-term commitment from Mbappe last summer signalled that he was considering a new challenge elsewhere and he reportedly told the PSG board at the end of last season that he has no plans to renew that contract again.
As a result, PSG have made it publicly known that Mbappe is up for sale as they do not want a prized asset to be allowed to leave for nothing when his contract expires next year. For most of the summer, everyone assumed that Real Madrid would come in and pay the money for Mbappe, however, it now appears that there is a new frontrunner in the race for his signature.
Al-Hilal in huge offer for Mbappe
Saudi club, Al-Hilal, who have been busy this summer chasing other big names, have reportedly made a mouthwatering bid for the Frenchman in the last couple of hours. A bid worth around £260m has been offered to PSG for his signature and they have offered the mercurial forward a contract that would make him the highest paid footballer on the planet.
The reported contract on offer to Mbappe is a one-year deal worth $700m for the player himself. That equates to around $13m per week which would blow Cristiano Ronaldo's Al-Nassr's wage out of the water. If Mbappe was to agree to the move then the theory is that he would play for Al-Hilal for one season before returning to European football in 2024.
More on exclusive Al Hilal-Mbappé story revealed today 🔵🇸🇦
PSG, obviously accepting €300m bid… but no talks with player as of now.
Al Hilal will offer Mbappé world record salary — even if just for one season.
PSG feel Kylian’s agreement with Real Madrid for 2024 is sealed. pic.twitter.com/pZvXBKKN7E
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 24, 2023
The appeal of this deal for all parties is obvious. For PSG, they would receive a world record fee for a player who doesn't want to be there anymore and who could leave for free next summer. For Al-Hilal, they get one of the best footballers on the planet for a season which is sure to boost coverage of the Saudi Pro League. And finally, for Mbappe, he gets to earn $700m for a season before getting his dream move to Real Madrid on his terms next summer.
The Frenchman was reportedly prepared to simply sit out of all football action next season due to tension with the PSG board and wait for his contract in Paris to expire. With this Saudi option now on the table, though, he could effectively do the same thing but earn significantly more money and still play competitive football, too, ahead of Euro 2024 next year.
Is Mbappe worth it?
In a world of crazy transfer fees and obscene wages, this one really would top the lot. Yes, Mbappe is one of the very best footballers in the world and he is very marketable, too. However, for the sake of one season, a £256m fee is something that has never been seen before and may never be seen again depending on how the development of the Saudi Pro League goes in the coming years.
On the flip side, this is a player in the prime of his career and therefore perhaps he does deserve the title of the highest-paid football in the world. For years, he has had to share the limelight with Neymar and Lionel Messi in Paris but this move would signal that Mbappe now is the number one man in football.