Zinedine Zidane Says Kylian Mbappe's 'Dream Is to Play for Real Madrid'

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistNovember 5, 2019

Paris Saint-Germain's French forward Kylian Mbappe celebrates after scoring a goal during the French L1 football match between Dijon Football Cote-d'Or (DFCO) and Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) on November 1, 2019, at the Gaston Gerard stadium in Dijon. (Photo by Philippe DESMAZES / AFP) (Photo by PHILIPPE DESMAZES/AFP via Getty Images)

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has said he knows Kylian Mbappe's "dream is to play for Real Madrid," with the Paris Saint-Germain and France star continuing his red-hot form this season. 

Mbappe, 20, has already become a long-term fixture in Real transfer rumours. Zidane spoke to reporters ahead of Wednesday's UEFA Champions League game at home to Galatasaray and said he knows his countryman has long held Madrid as a dream destination, via Omnisport:

Omnisport @OmnisportNews

Zinedine Zidane knows Kylian Mbappe's dream is to play for Real Madrid...👀 #RealMadrid #Mbappe #Zidane #PSG https://t.co/taBkGCfYQq

Zidane was asked if he thought Mbappe would one day play for Los Blancos, and he replied: "I don't know, it's the player who decides. At the moment he plays for Paris Saint-Germain, we'll see in the future if that changes. I know he always said his dream is to play for Real Madrid."

The striker moved to the Parc des Princes from AS Monaco in August 2017, spending one season on loan with PSG before he joined the French powerhouse on a permanent basis for €145 million. Mbappe is contracted at the club until the summer of 2022 but could be tempted elsewhere before then.

Le Parisien (h/t Andres Onrubia and Jonathan Meaney of AS) reported Real president Florentino Perez is willing to pay up to €300 million (£258 million) for the player. In response, PSG are understood to be readying an annual package worth around €40 million (£34.4 million) to keep Mbappe in Paris.

That figure would put Mbappe on a par with Brazilian star Neymar, who joined PSG from Barcelona in 2017 for a world-record fee but now looks like the less respected figure in the French capital. 

Manager Thomas Tuchel recently spoke to the club's official Twitter account and said he shares a close relationship with Mbappe, who has scored 69 goals and recorded 36 assists in 97 games for PSG:

Paris Saint-Germain @PSG_English

🎙@TTuchelofficial: "My relationship with @KMbappe is top. He is a boy who always has a smile. He is so talented, I push him so that he can be even better." #PSGlive https://t.co/9CthYUDLdo

Tuchel may not like Zidane's response to a hypothetical question, particularly given PSG's struggles reaching the final stages of the Champions League despite huge squad investment in the past decade. 

Mbappe played a prominent role in the France squad that won the 2018 FIFA World Cup, a success that may have intensified any desire 1998 world champion Zidane has to sign the player.

PSG's poacher was recently sidelined due to injury, though he's shown no signs of a hangover since his recent return to fitness, per Squawka:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Since the end of the international break, Kylian Mbappé has played 115 minutes across all competitions for PSG. He's scored six goals. 🤯 https://t.co/AtA994GotT

Real incumbent Karim Benzema—who is in his 11th season at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu—turns 32 in December, and the club may see countryman Mbappe as the ideal successor.

PSG beat Los Blancos 3-0 when the Group A opponents clashed earlier this season, and Zidane will hope to avenge that result when the Champions League foes meet again in Madrid on November 26.