Real Madrid President Florentino Perez sat down with Spanish programme El Chiringuito on Wednesday evening and promised at the start of it not to evade a single question. To his credit, he answered everything thrown his way.
Naturally, the chief matter he was quizzed on was Kylian Mbappe. The transfer saga of the year took an unexpected turn as the French forward chose to stay at Paris Saint-Germain rather than joining Real Madrid. It was a move that caused no shortage of consternation throughout the footballing sphere of Madrid.
The first question Perez was asked on the topic was whether Mbappe had betrayed him, as quoted by Sport.
“He didn’t betray me. He transmitted his dream to play at Real Madrid. And it’s true. Last August PSG didn’t want to sell. We waited a year and he kept saying the same thing. Fifteen days before the situation changed because of the political pressure and the economic factor.”
“He did what he thought was easiest. He changed. There’s no need to go over it again. As a result of the pressure he had to change his dreams… he’s very young, the pressure affects us all but the young people more. It didn’t make sense that the President of the Republic [Emmanuel Macron] was calling him… This influenced him a lot, most definitely.”
That call from French President Macron was confirmed by the man himself. No doubt there was a certain degree of pressure placed on Mbappe and the financial package would have been significant, yet Perez seemed reluctant to accept that Mbappe could’ve preferred to stay in his home country at this early stage in his career.
“The Mbappe I wanted was the one that dreamed of Real Madrid.”
“Signing him in three years? I don’t know… in the space of 3 years, we could all be bald [anything can happen].”
“This Mbappe, is not Mbappe. A player that refuses to do an act of sponsorship with his national team, I don’t want. I thought that he had a dream, but sometimes they [dreams] can’t be realised because of external causes.”