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Mbappe chose PSG ´dream´ in spite of bigger offers, Al-Khelaifi claims

12 wrzesień 2017 09:54

Kylian Mbappe was offered more money by other clubs but rejected those advances to fulfil his dream of playing for Paris Saint-Germain, according to Nasser Al-Khelaifi.

The 18-year-old forward enjoyed a breakthrough year with Monaco last season, helping the team to win the Ligue 1 title and reach the Champions League semi-finals.

Mbappe was linked with a host of Europe's biggest clubs as Monaco braced themselves to lose the talented attacker, and he duly sealed an initial loan move to PSG, which will become permanent for a reported fee of €180 million at the end of the season.

PSG chief executive Al-Khelaifi is adamant Paris native Mbappe had only one destination in his mind, regardless of the other sides interested in his services.

"It was very competitive, trust me," he told The Telegraph. "Some other clubs offered him more than us.

"Every big club wanted him. But we explained to him our project and the ambition of the club and he's French, he's a Parisian and he had the club in his heart.

"He wanted to stay in France and defend the French colours in the Champions League. It's deep inside him.

"He wants to write history here and he has history here already – you saw the pictures of him [at the player's presentation] when he was here 10 years ago? A picture does not lie. He loves the club and it's his dream to play for Paris Saint-Germain."

The Mbappe deal, coupled with PSG's astonishing world-record €222m move for Neymar, provoked criticism and scrutiny from across Europe, with Barcelona and LaLiga both calling on UEFA to investigate the French giants for potential breaches of Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations.

Al-Khelaifi is not worried, however, insisting PSG are already in a strong position financially and have another year to meet FFP stipulations.

He added: "We have been working very hard for the past six years to build the revenues of the club and they have increased through ticketing, sponsoring, merchandising, match day and TV rights from €90m to approximately €500m, with the last two seasons running profits.

"We now plan to continue to increase our revenue from between 20 and 40 per cent. We have a year to meet FFP criteria.

"We have until June 30 2018. So I tell everybody: relax and think about your project. We think about building our project.

"There is pressure from other clubs [to investigate PSG], but I don't think UEFA will be influenced by the pressure because they are very professional and very serious.

"For the thousandth time I am very confident. We respect all clubs and we expect the same in return.

"We have been investing in the French league and to be highly competitive in the Champions League. We are respecting all rules and regulations."

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