Having been named France Football’s French player of the season this morning, Kylian Mbappé gave an in-depth interview to the publication, dating from before the June international break – and before his contract feud with Paris Saint-Germain went public.
The France captain has won the award for the third time in his career, comfortably seeing off Karim Benzema by 70 points after being named as the top choice for 20 of the 29 members of the jury. His 54 goals this season – an all-time record for a Frenchman – on top of his World Cup final exploits will have inevitably played in his favour. Antoine Griezmann rounds out the podium, edging out Mike Maignan and Randal Kolo Muani.
Looking back on his campaign, Mbappé says that his only regret is the World Cup final – “It’s difficult to say anything else when you’re that close, when you only lose on penalties in the final. But that’s the way it is. If we lost, it’s because we were meant to. […] But we’ll be back. I think we’ll win another one. The squad has that desire, that dream. I hope I’ll be able to say in a few years that it was a blessing in disguise, even if losing a World Cup final will always hurt. But I’ve learned to live with it and it’s not painful for me anymore.”
Mbappé goes on to speak of his Ballon d’Or ambitions – but explains that the consistency of his PSG performances may go unnoticed: “I’ve been scoring a lot for years. So for people, it’s become the norm. I’ve never complained that my performances could be normalised”.
On PSG’s Champions League ambitions, the forward speaks of a “glass ceiling“, and indicates that he does not have all the answers, but rather that it is a question for “those above” at PSG to resolve. When asked about where he will be playing next season, the 24-year-old remained enigmatic, but was adamant that his competitive spirit would be unwavering, whether in France or Spain – “Whoever you have me play with, whatever shirt I’m wearing, wherever I am, whatever the year, I will never be satisfied – even more so in the case of a trophy I haven’t won, with the Champions League.”