‘People thought it was careless’

In the spotlight of world football right now, as its future in the Paris Saint-Germain is put in check amidst the European transfer window, the striker Kylian Mbappe gave an interview to the magazine “Esquire” and broke the ice amidst so many uncertainties. And the number 7 shirt of the Parisian club talked a lot about one of his great teammates within the four lines: Neymar.

Regarding his relationship with the Brazilian, the 22-year-old forward showed a lot of respect and admiration for the PSG shirt number 10. Mbappé even recalled a conversation he had with Neymar, right after being world champion with France in 2018, in Russia. And according to him, his intention was never or will never be to take the place of his teammate at the Parque dos Príncipes.

“I will not step in your garden. I will be a candidate for the Ballon d’Or this year [2018] because you won’t be, but I promise I don’t want to take your place,” recalled Mbappé about the words spoken to the Brazilian at the meeting.

Still on the attacking partner, Mbappé recalled that Neymar suffered in his start at PSG. And all this because of the cultural difference between Brazil and France. Shirt 7 made a point of explaining.

“In Brazil people are more festive, in France more serious. Here it is not considered a good thing to show your passions. People thought it was careless with PSG that he played poker. him, because he lived it as an affront. When he arrived, they put his face on the Eiffel Tower and six months later they asked him why he played poker. In France, people know what you have, but they don’t need to see it. you playing football, smiling,” he continued.

Lastly, Mbappé also talked about the comparisons with his newest teammate, Lionel Messi, and Cristiano Ronaldo. The French also answered about Erling Haaland, from Borussia Dortmund, which is also compared to him.

“Everyone knows that. If you tell yourself you’re going to do better than them, it goes beyond ego or determination: it’s a lack of conscience. These players are incomparable. They’ve broken all the statistical barriers. They’ve had ten, fifteen extraordinary years. You always compare yourself to the best in your sport. (…) I think other players are watching me too. I think this leads the footballer to elevate his game, just as Messi was good to Ronaldo and Ronaldo it was good for Messi,” he said.

“It’s his second year [Haaland], we are getting to know him. It’s the beginning for him. I’m happy for him, for what he’s doing,” he concluded.