With Alvaro Morata parting ways with Real Madrid and joining Antonio Conte’s Premier League winning side Chelsea, Los Blancos are now desperate to land a new striker who would challenge for a starting position with Karim Benzema. Numerous news reports have reported that a staggering fee of £160 million has been agreed for the young French striker Kylian Mbappe. The teenager recently won the Ligue 1 with French side Monaco during a stellar 2016-17 campaign, where he had an exceptional goal scoring record—registering 26 goals and providing 8 assists. And all that in his first season as a professional footballer. But, does all the hype surrounding the young starlet make him worth the enormous price tag? Let’s look at the pros and cons if Mbappe were to make a sensational move to the back-to-back UCL winners:
Mbappe’s transfer would build a new wave of Galacticos to come
Florentino Perez’s transfer tactics in recent years have experienced a dramatic shift. No longer is it all about finding the next Galactico, but about finding young promising stars and turning them into Galacticos. The current Real Madrid side is exceptional, no doubt about it; but, with Ronaldo currently aging at 32-years old, Luka Modric and Sergio Ramos currently 31, Pérez has already begun thinking about the future. Already, Madrid has acquired the services of Theo Hernandez from Atletico Madrid, U-21 Euro golden boy Dani Ceballos from Real Betis, and returning players Jesús Vallejo and Marcos Llorente. Mbappe would perfectly gel into this young crop of potential superstars that would challenge for success, having already won Ligue 1 with Monaco and reaching the Champions League semi-finals during the 2016-17 season. With Mbappe’s deadly eye for goal, blistering pace and incredible dribbling ability he would definitely be an excellent acquisition for years to come.
Mbappe would challenge Karim Benzema—which could help the latter regain his consistency
Much of Real Madrid’s success in the 2016/17 season—when they won the league and Champions League double—was based on Zidane’s decisive decision making ability wherein he rotated star players and rested them ahead of key matches. Zidane often opted to play a “B” side against Real’s weaker opponents whilst resting players such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, Marcelo, amongst others. His firm rotation policy throughout the season provided first team opportunities for youngsters such as Asensio while keeping star players such as Isco happy. This rotation policy sparked a hunger to compete for starting positions and would give most of Madrid’s players a mentality to achieve more and compete at a higher level. But this rotation policy did not benefit the likes of Álvaro Morata, as Karim Benzema had captured the starting striker’s role most definitively. Zidane’s biased decision to start Benzema ahead of Morata had left the young Spanish striker unsettled at the capital, eventually resulting in a move to Chelsea for a reported fee of £58 million. If Mbappe’s deal goes through, there would be no bias argument for Zidane to face, as both the youngster and Benzema are French internationals. Benzema’s minutes might finally be threatened, and that could lead to more consistency from the no. 9.
The fee for him would be a little too much
Even in today’s fluctuated footballing market a deal of this proportion for an 18-year-old is absolutely ridiculous. The reported fee for Mbappe would be roughly twice the sum Real paid Manchester United for Ronaldo. Sure, Mbappe has insane amounts of potential but is his equally insane £160 million valuation worth it?
He still needs time to develop
Despite taking the footballing world by storm during the 2016-17 campaign, many argue that Mbappe still needs time to develop. At only 18-years of age, his body is still developing physically, and playing in Ligue 1 which is disregarded as an “easy league” by many, a big money move for him just wouldn’t seem right at this stage. Playing in his home country and developing his craft for an additional couple of years would be seen as a more reasonable move for the young starlet.