Monaco boss Leonardo Jardim has issued a stern message to Arsenal in their pursuit of Kylian Mbappé, stating his belief that the wonderkid would be better off in France.
Arsene Wenger’s side, along with UEFA Champions League winners Real Madrid, are both trying to sign the 18-year-old forward this summer.
After an excellent breakthrough campaign across all competitions for Monaco last season, Mbappé’s stock has progressively increased and represents a fantastic long-term investment despite potentially commanding a world-record transfer fee.
£100m and above are just the starting offers that have been previously mentioned, and after his excellent season last term it’s no surprise he has attracted interest from Europe’s best sides.
Despite having a disadvantage in negotiations when compared with Real, Arsenal are hopeful they can convince the teenager into making a switch to north London and asserting world-class credentials at a crucial stage in his career.
Wenger has told him he’d be open to building his side around the striker, but unsurprisingly Monaco are desperate to retain their prized asset for another season at least and have already offered him a whopping 900% wage increase.
He’d be in-line with Radamel Falcao as Monaco’s top earner on £140,000-a-week.
When speaking to Canal+ Sport at the second Professional Football Convention in Cannes on Wednesday, Jardim reaffirmed his belief that the youngster would be best suited to remaining with the Ligue 1 champions – not least with the upcoming World Cup next summer.
“Today, Kylian can play anywhere. But I’d like him to continue at Monaco because he has our trust,” Jardim was quoted as saying by Football.london. “Before the World Cup, he can continue doing good work with Monaco. He has time to go to a big club.”
It’s evident Jardim is keen to retain as many key players as possible and Mbappé’s presence would prove a signal of their intent for next term and beyond.
You can understand why he’d be reluctant to make a world-record move now at 18-years-old, not least with his international place under Didier Deschamps on the line if he joins a side and isn’t guaranteed regular starting minutes.