Pep Guardiola wants Manchester City to sign the rising star of world football, Kylian Mbappé, in a £200 million January deal, Alan Nixon of The Sun reports.
City have tried and failed twice to sign Mbappé in the summer of 2016 when he was a little known youngster at Monaco, then a year later in 2017 when he moved to Paris Saint-Germain on an initial loan before the Ligue 1 giants made the deal permanent for £162 million.
City and PSG are known not to do business directly due to political tensions between their Arab owners, but UEFA have reopened their Financial Fair Play probe into the Parisiens, which could pressure them into sales if it leads to the threat of punishment.
And the report by Alan Nixon, who was first to break City’s interest in Riyad Mahrez this January, claims Guardiola wants Mbappé who he sees as the player to take City to Champions League glory. Mbappé would be paid £20 million per year in wages, making him the club’s highest earner.
New UEFA rules mean Mbappé would NOT be cup-tied in the Champions League knockout stages were he to make a mid-season move from Paris to Manchester.
To fund such a deal without themselves falling foul of FFP, City would have to sell at least one star player, and it is suggested that in-form Raheem Sterling could be the one, especially if he fails to agree a new contract by then.
Sterling is out of contract in June 2020 and talks so far have ended in a stalemate, although the 23-year-old, who was impressive again as City overcame Brighton on Saturday, would like to stay if he is made one of the club’s top earners.
City Watch Opinion: The likelihood of Mbappé joining City in January is slim, although would be a statement of intent to the world of football if they could pull it off. As the newest global superstar of football, Mbappé would bring benefits on and off the pitch and would be a highly marketable figure for City’s growth as a club in the years ahead. Though this story is hard to believe, the author is known to get some good scoops, often for lower league transfers, and as mentioned was first on to City’s pursuit of Mahrez. If PSG are punished by UEFA, a summer attempt for Mbappé sounds likelier, but Real Madrid would undoubtedly offer tough competition.