PSG superstar Kylian Mbappe would jump at the chance of a move to Liverpool, according to one of France’s football’s most decorated stars of recent times.
The 21-year-old has starred for PSG since in a €180million deal in 2017, but regularly the subject of transfer speculation amid strong reports linking him with both Liverpool and Real Madrid.
The French World Cup winner is reportedly on the Reds’ transfer wishlist as a potential replacement for Sadio Mane, should the Senegalese complete a proposed move to Real Madrid.
Those reports have stepped up a notch over the past couple of months with a report claiming Liverpool will agree a summer 2021 deal to sign him amid talk of a lucrative swap deal.
And while reports have claimed Liverpool have the funds to sign the France international, Jurgen Klopp, who met the player’s family members in an bid to convince him to sign for Liverpool back three summers ago, says they have “absolutely no chance” of signing the player.
“Buying this calibre of player is difficult,” said Klopp. “I don’t see any club at the moment who can buy Kylian Mbappe from PSG. I don’t see any club, that is how it is. And we are involved in the clubs that cannot do it. It is as easy as that.
“OK, from a sporting point of view, there are not a lot of reasons to not sign him. What a player he is. But it is about the money of course. No chance. Absolutely no chance. Sorry for killing that story.”
However, despite Liverpool’s consistent denials, Willy Sagnol reckons the partnership would be a match made in heaven – with the France World Cup winner telling SportBild why Mbappe would be so keen to make the move to Anfield.
“This club [Liverpool] has a big advantage,” Sagnol said in quotes translated by Sport Witness, before crediting Jurgen Klopp as the principle reason.
“With Klopp you have a coach with whom every player in the world would like to work. Mbappe would have to adjust under him: he demands a lot of defensive work from his strikers, which Mbappe is not yet good at.”
And Sagnol, who want the Bundesliga title five times with Bayern Munich, believes Mbappe would improve massively at Liverpool under the guidance of Klopp.
“Mbappe can learn that [the defensive side of the game], especially from a guy like Klopp. No question: Mbappe could become a king with Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool.”
Barnes explains why Mbappe to Liverpool wouldn’t work
That inability – or some would say ‘refusal’ – to adhere to the defensive side of things is the major reason why Liverpool great John Barnes thinks any move to sign Mbappe would be an expensive mistake.
“They’ll need to sign another forward at some point in case one of the front three leaves but it will have to fit what Klopp wants,” the former Liverpool winger said.
“Kylian Mbappe is fantastic on the ball but would he do the other stuff? I’d suggest if you’re a 21-year-old superstar, your attitude isn’t going to change….”
Discussing why Klopp signs players to fit his system, not the other way round and why Mbappe could interrupt that plan, Barnes added: “Klopp signs players to fit his system, not only because they looked great at their previous clubs,” he continued.
“Ninety-nine per cent of people wouldn’t pick [Jordan] Henderson and [Gini] Wijnaldum above Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva or even Jack Grealish or James Maddison, but they work for Liverpool.
“Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri came in for the Barcelona semi-final, their attitude was great and they were physically ready. It shows they were training well, waiting for their chance.
“Jurgen creates that environment. One of the bravest things was letting Philippe Coutinho go and not directly replacing him. Liverpool trusted him.”
One man who Barnes does rate highly and claims is the most important member of Klopp’s forward line is Roberto Firmino, despite the fact his goal contributions always fall well short of Salah and Mane.
“I think he is the most important forward in what he gives the team,” he said. “He gives Liverpool invention in tight areas.”
One French star who Liverpool also appear keen on is Houssem Aouar and the latest reports across the channel claim the Reds are very much in the running to sign the Lyon playmaker. Read more here.