Opinion: Should Manchester United go for Kylian Mbappe? It’s not so simple

Opinion: Should Manchester United go for Kylian Mbappe? It’s not so simple

In a bolt from the blue, outlet El Pais reported that PSG intend to sell Kylian Mbappe to Manchester United if Sheikh Jassim’s bid is successful in a deal that is being planned since February.

Kylian Mbappe’s future has been uncertain from the moment he started playing for PSG. The links to Real Madrid have never gone away and now with Manchester United making acquaintances with Qatar and Sheikh Jassim courtesy of the takeover saga, this is a development that is somehow not unexpected.

Alongside Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappe is widely regarded as the apparent heir to the “Messi-Ronaldo” era. Therefore, United should be giddy at the thought of signing Kylian Mbappe, right? Well, it’s not so simple. In fact, Manchester United should avoid getting involved altogether if there’s even a whiff of this being realistic.

Here’s why:

Qatar zone at Old Trafford

We extensively reported why Nasser Al-Khelaifi’s involvement with the Sheikh Jassim bid for the Manchester United takeover was a red herring. This news lends further credence to the same.

Sheikh Jassim’s camp keeps stressing his bid is not backed by the state, but in Qatar, wealthy individuals are rarely free from it. The threat of PSG’s superstar circus landing at Old Trafford was always going to be a distinct possibility if Sheikh Jassim’s takeover was to go through.

Looking through that lens, the Kylian Mbappe news has a dual effect. Firstly, it tempts the fans into backing Sheikh Jassim’s bid. After all, who wouldn’t want a future Ballon d’Or winner at the club?

The philosophy of “Sporting reasons and footballing project be damned, just acquire the world’s best players” has not worked well at PSG and there’s no reason to think it would be any different at United. In fact, United have had a dose of superstar headache with Pogba, Di Maria, and the like.

Now, if there is any truth to the Mbappe links, the Qatar era will well and truly begin at the club. Considering the mess PSG have been in, it should not be a welcome prospect for the fans.

Uneasy tactical fit

This notion is often brushed aside by the general public thinking along the lines of – “You should always acquire the best players, tactics sort themselves out.”

The truth couldn’t be farther from it. Again, United experienced this firsthand with Cristiano Ronaldo’s ill-fated second spell at the club. Top-level football is increasingly becoming a highly intense and tactical team game. Get ready for an extensive set of Ronaldo deja vu if Mbappe lands at Old Trafford.

Despite his elite goalscoring skills, Kylian Mbappe has made it clear that he prefers to play on the left wing which gets him more involved in the game. Multiple head coaches have sacrificed the team balance to accommodate him as per his preference, leading to their demise. Furthermore, there has been evidence of Mbappe throwing a fit on many occasions when the ball isn’t passed to him and the team isn’t built around talents.

Ironically, the left-wing spot is the one which feels most secure at Manchester United. If a new striker arrives, the left wing is the position where Marcus Rashford thrives. Coming off his most successful season, shifting him to accommodate Mbappe, who doesn’t even want United as his first choice, would be a team chemistry disaster in the making.

Erik ten Hag has worked hard to get over the player-power culture at the club, with his ousting of Ronaldo the biggest example. Kylian Mbappe’s presence will take United back to those days that nobody pines for.

A financial mess

United’s concerns with Financial Fair Play this season are well documented. It is why so many players are on the chopping block. To add Mbappe’s mammoth salary of nearly £1 million/week would be ill-advised, to put it politely. Furthermore, PSG will most definitely ask for a fee north of £150 million, even with just a year left on his deal.

It won’t matter if Sheikh Jassim’s bid is successful, there will be riots in Paris if the owners there give Sheikh Jassim a “discount”. With that outlay on Mbappe, United’s whole transfer budget will be gone on a player who:

Would rather play for Real Madrid
Doesn’t fill a position of need
Be a threat to the locker room harmony
Turn the wage structure of the club upside down

In conclusion, Kylian Mbappe is a transfer straight from the Ed Woodward book of football transactions. It is precisely the kind of move which has led United to this point, where the club is mired in FFP difficulties due to years of financial mismanagement and splurging mindlessly. Even if Mbappe’s conduct at PSG wasn’t a red flag, the sporting and financial reasons alone would make this deal not worth it for Manchester United.

Brighter is not always better, and United would do well to learn that lesson. They only need to look at their own history for the past decade to do so.

The post Opinion: Should Manchester United go for Kylian Mbappe? It’s not so simple appeared first on Stretty News.

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