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Real Madrid are aiming for a different outcome in their pursuit of Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappé this summer.
ESPN’s Alex Kirkland and Rodrigo Faez reported Madrid “remain cautious” but “are also hopeful” a transfer materializes.
Kirkland and Faez added that club officials aren’t expected to let the negotiations play out in public again after last year’s attempts to lure Mbappé away from the French capital failed.
Real Madrid already executed the biggest move of the summer window by signing Jude Bellingham from Borussia Dortmund for an initial fee of £88.5 million.
Jude Bellingham @BellinghamJude
Hola Madridistas!🤍<br>It is the proudest day of my life to join the greatest club in the history of the game. I will give absolutely everything I have to help this team win. Thank you for the amazing welcome. HALA MADRID!!!🤍🤍🤍 <a href=”https://t.co/MVdArVXMQf”>pic.twitter.com/MVdArVXMQf</a>
Club has also added Fran García, Joselu and Brahim Díaz, with Eden Hazard and Karim Benzema exiting the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
Kirkland and Faez wrote Madrid “has left vacant the No. 9 shirt” Benzema once occupied because the door to sign Mbappé has yet to close for good ahead of the 2023-24 season.
The 24-year-old indicated to PSG officials earlier this month he won’t trigger the player option in his contract for 2024-25. As a result, he could potentially leave on a free transfer in another year and sign a pre-contract agreement as early as January 2024.
As a state-owned club, Paris Saint-Germain doesn’t have to worry about finances as much as others do. Still, forgoing a nine-figure transfer fee would be a bold call. ESPN’s Julien Laurens reported the reigning Ligue 1 champion is “open to listening to offers” and that €150 million could be the estimated asking price.
The list of clubs that can fund a transfer of that size is small, and the list of clubs for whom Mbappé would want to play is even smaller. Real Madrid checks both boxes, and the dynamic Frenchman “wants to sign,” per Kirkland and Faez.
We’ve been down this road before, so nothing is guaranteed. But all of the signs so far point to Real Madrid finally landing the one player it covets more than any other.