Although he is continuing to set the French League on fire, Paris Saint Germain forward Kylian Mbappe was only moments away from joining Barcelona in the summer, a documentary by L’Equipe revealed yesterday.
With PSG contemplating how they would go about paying the massive 180-million-euro price tag on the 18-year-old only days after spending a record-shattering 222 million euros on Neymar, his then-club Monaco began to weigh their options in case a deal could not be worked out, an easy task considering the number of suitors for the Frenchman.
PSG were in a bind after meeting Neymar’s massive buy-out clause as they could not have possibly prised away Mbappe and still be within UEFA’s strictly enforced Financial Fair Play (FFP) model.
That was when La Liga giants Real Madrid and Barcelona stepped in, with both clubs making late attempts to sign the teenager as the transfer deadline loomed, the documentary, titled ‘Kylian Mbappe – Hors normes’, shows.
Conscious of PSG’s cashflow problems, Monaco reached an agreement with Barcelona who had been willing to spend an unspecified ‘vast fee’. They would also include Arda Turan in the deal as a makeweight after having brought in Ousmane Dembele for 180 million euros only days prior.
The documentary explains that the deal had become concrete and Barcelona had arranged for Mbappe to be flown to Catalonia where he could put pen to paper and complete the deal on the penultimate day of the transfer window, with PSG still having no agreement with their French counterparts.
However, Le Parisiens finally found a way to circumnavigate FFP on deadline day, convincing Moncao to part with their teenage sensation on a one-year loan deal, at the end of which they will be paid a king’s ransom of 180 million euros.