PSG chief Al-Khelaifi keen to keep Mbappe and rejects Zidane link

By Sports Desk November 30, 2021

Paris Saint-Germain remain hopeful of reopening contract talks with Kylian Mbappe and want him to win the Ballon d'Or with the club, president Nasser Al-Khelaifi declared.

Al-Khelaifi also dismissed speculation that PSG want to replace head coach Mauricio Pochettino with Zinedine Zidane.

Speaking after Lionel Messi became the first player from the club to win Ballon d'Or honours – largely attributed to him winning the Copa America with Argentina – Al-Khelaifi made his position known about the burning issues affecting PSG.

There have been deep worries that Mbappe will walk away on a free transfer at the end of the season, when his current deal expires. Real Madrid wanted him in the last transfer window and are expected to move again. Unless Mbappe commits to a new deal, he would be free to talk to the likes of Madrid from January.

But Al-Khelaifi can see a future in which Mbappe continues to terrorise defences in a PSG shirt, just as he is currently doing in tandem with former Barcelona captain Messi.

The PSG president addressed that within the context of Messi's award success, saying: "For the club, it is the first, I hope it is not the last. I hope that other players will win it, starting with Kylian. I'm sure he wants to win it."

Speaking to L'Equipe, Al-Khelaifi said of the 22-year-old striker's future: "You know what I think, Kylian is a great player, a great man. Kylian knows what he wants to do, us too."

On the potential for new contract talks, the PSG president added, according to RMC Sport: "We hope."

It remains to be seen whether either Mbappe or Pochettino stay in Paris beyond the end of this season.

There have been persistent rumours that PSG would consider swapping Pochettino for former Real Madrid boss Zidane, but Al-Khelaifi threw his support behind the Argentine coach currently at the helm.

"Pochettino is our coach and he is happy to be with us, we are happy to work with him," Al-Khelaifi said.

"He is doing a good job. Everyone needs time. I see all the rumours, we have to stop talking about this, it's not true.

"We're truly happy with the coach. We haven't had any contact with Zidane. He's a great coach, but we also have a very good one."

Related items

  • STETHS, Edwin Allen advance to Ben Francis Cup final STETHS, Edwin Allen advance to Ben Francis Cup final

    Edwin Allen High and St. Elizabeth Technical will contest the final of the Ben Francis Cup Knockout after winning their semi-final fixtures on Tuesday.

    The double-header at STETHS saw Edwin Allen secure a comfortable 4-0 victory over Manchester High in the opening fixture and the host school pulling out a 1-0 win over Frome Technical in the second.

    The final will be played at STETHS on Friday, January 21.

    The hosts will be looking to secure their seventh Ben Francis Cup while Edwin Allen will be seeking their first.

  • Juventus 4-1 Sampdoria: Bianconeri make strong start to Coppa Italia defence Juventus 4-1 Sampdoria: Bianconeri make strong start to Coppa Italia defence

    Juventus launched their Coppa Italia title defence with a commanding 4-1 victory over Sampdoria at the Allianz Stadium.

    A free-kick from Juan Cuadrado gave the reigning champions a 25th-minute lead, while Daniele Rugani's first Bianconeri goal in almost three years doubled the advantage after the break.

    Andrea Conti replied for Sampdoria, whose fortunes were overseen by Felice Tufano following the sacking of coach Roberto D’Aversa on Monday.

    But substitute Paulo Dybala put the hosts back in control, before Alvaro Morata's penalty sealed their place in the quarter-finals.

     

    Juventus had won eight of their nine previous Coppa Italia meetings with Sampdoria, while they had not been eliminated from this stage of the competition since 2005.

    The Bianconeri made a strong start as Cuadrado tested Wladimiro Falcone with a fierce drive, but soon after there was no denying the Colombian, who drilled a low free-kick into the far corner.

    Juve thought they had doubled their lead when Morata swept home within 60 seconds of the restart. But the Spain international was denied by VAR after Adrien Rabiot was adjudged to have fouled Tomas Rincon in the build-up.

    The second goal arrived seven minutes after the interval; Rugani, who last found the net for Juventus in February 2019, climbed to nod home Arthur’s inviting cross.

    Despite a turbulent build-up that included the departure of D’Aversa, Sampdoria responded in the 63rd minute. Unmarked at the far post, Conti was allowed too much time to control before drilling past Mattia Perin.

    However, their hard work was undone almost immediately as they were robbed of possession outside the penalty box, with Dybala gratefully sweeping home.

    Morata then put the icing on the cake from the penalty spot after Marley was brought down by Tommaso Augello.

  • Simeone on struggling Suarez: 'I have spoken to him for two months' Simeone on struggling Suarez: 'I have spoken to him for two months'

    Diego Simeone has opened up about conversations with Luis Suarez as Atletico Madrid attempt to get the former Barcelona striker back to form.

    The Uruguay international is Atletico's top scorer in all competitions this season, albeit with just nine goals from 27 appearances.

    The 34-year-old, whose contract at Wanda Metropolitano expires at the end of the campaign, has only found the net once in his last 11 club matches.

    Suarez's frustration was evident when he was substituted during last month's defeat at Sevilla, with the former Liverpool striker appearing to direct expletives towards coach Simeone.

    With the striker's sharp shooting deserting him and his future uncertain, the Atleti boss said there have been discussions between the pair in recent times.

    Ahead of Atletico's Copa del Rey clash with Real Sociedad on Wednesday, Simeone said: "We have spoken with Luis for two months about what I think of him, of how important he is for us.

    "What I think of him, he knows it and I didn't speak to him after Sevilla, I have spoken to him for two months."

     

    Suarez has scored 30 goals across all competitions since his September 2020 transfer from Barcelona – more than any other Atletico team-mate. Karim Benzema (54) and Gerard Moreno (41) are the only players currently based in Spain to have scored more often during that time.

    Additionally, only Messi (231) betters Suarez's tally of 175 LaLiga goals since the Uruguayan joined Barcelona from Liverpool in July 2014.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.