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6 March, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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PSG’s Mbappe plots Real downfall

AFP

AFP, PARIS: It is not so long ago that Kylian Mbappe idolised Cristiano Ronaldo. Now the 19-year-old is hoping to lead Paris Saint-Germain to a famous victory over the Portuguese star and Real Madrid on Tuesday.

Mbappe was outshone by Ronaldo in the sides' Champions League last 16, first leg last month, with the world player of the year scoring twice as Madrid won 3-1 at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The teenager has since seen Neymar succumb to a foot injury, meaning PSG will have to settle for just the second most expensive player on the planet in their attack for the Parc des Princes rematch.

While the Brazilian recovers from an operation in his home country, the expectation on Mbappe becomes greater. But there is no evidence that he will wilt under the added pressure.

After all, he took his 180 million-euro ($215 million) price tag in his stride when he moved to Paris from Monaco last August.

There is an intelligence beyond his years that is immediately apparent when Mbappe speaks to the media, as well as when he plays.

“The little guy is clever and that, for me, is the sign of a bloke who can go far,” Thierry Henry, to whom he has been compared, told Canal+ last year.

That was just as Mbappe's career was taking off, but everything has happened very quickly for him in the last 12 months.

Mbappe has won a Ligue 1 title and been to a Champions League semi-final with Monaco. He has reached 10 caps for France and turned down a move to Real.

“There were a lot of rumours about my transfer and it is true that I spoke to Real, but that is in the past now,” he told Spanish sports daily Marca in December about his decision to join PSG instead.

Despite the draw of playing for Zinedine Zidane, and alongside Ronaldo, Mbappe -- from the Paris suburbs -- preferred to join his local team. “It is like a kid from Madrid having the choice between playing for Real and wearing the colours of another team,” he said.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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