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Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe was close to joining Arsenal in 2017. Mbappe joined PSG from Monaco in 2018, after spending the 2017/2018 season on loan at Paris. The 22-year-old confirmed that joining the Gunners was an option when speaking in 2018.
“I met with Arsene Wenger, who is a great coach. He has a great reputation here in France, he’s well-respected and knows how to develop young players. This was a real option for me,” said Mbappe.
Speaking on Canal+ show Au Tableau, Mbappe said: “I dream of being managed by Arsène Wenger. He is French, he’s had a great career and now he is free because he has left Arsenal.”
“We weighed up the advantages and disadvantages of all the clubs but my family told me it had to be my decision and one I needed to make,” he admitted.
“It also had to be a long-term decision. So it was up to me and I decided to come here in order to develop.”
Meanwhile, former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger had confirmed his intention to sign the French star when speaking to Telefoot the same year.
“He could become the next Pelé,” Wenger told Telefoot. “He has no limits. He’s 18 and will only get stronger. I wanted him too, but €180m is too much for us.
“He has a balanced game for a striker. He scores goals and he gives chances. It’s the quality of great players.”
Mbappe shone for PSG as they beat Barcelona in the Champions League round of 16 first leg. The 22-year-old scored a hat-trick as the Ligue 1 side celebrated a 4-1 victory over La Liga side.