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Saudi Pro League in ‘open conversation’ with Kylian Mbappe over summer transfer


The director of the Saudi Pro League has confirmed officials remain in “open conversations” with Kylian Mbappe as he approaches the end of his contract with Paris Saint-Germain.

Having confirmed he would not trigger the extension in his current deal beyond the summer of 2024, Mbappe was transfer listed by PSG before the season began and Al Hilal saw a bid of €300m (£259m at the time of the bid) accepted.

Mbappe, however, made it clear he was not interested in moving to the Middle East at this point in his career and brought the talks to an abrupt end.

Since then, Mbappe has returned to the PSG fold after agreeing to forgo a €80m bonus which was due to him just for staying at the club this season. He has publicly insisted he plans to stay with PSG for the rest of the current campaign but, behind the scenes, is understood to have made it clear he has no plans to extend his contract any further.

Long-term admirers Real Madrid remain keen to land Mbappe and hope to do so on a free transfer, but the Frenchman can talk to any overseas clubs as early as 1 January and SPL director Michael Emenalo has refused to rule out another move for the 24-year-old.

Kylian Mbappe

Mbappe turned Saudi Arabia down last summer / Ralf Ibing – firo sportphoto/GettyImages

“It’s an open conversation, but we don’t know what he wants to do,” Emenalo told Sky Sports News. “Our position is very clear – any of these players know where we are.

“If there’s any interest in being part of what we are trying to build now or for the future, you can’t turn down an opportunity to see if Mbappe can join us. Kylian is someone I love as a player.”

Asked just how close Al Hilal, who went on to sign Neymar later in the summer, came to signing Mbappe, Emenalo conceded: “It’s never close if it’s not done. If it’s not done, it’s a huge chasm.

“I can’t say how deep the conversation went, but there was an express [of] interest that if he was ready to come, there was a club ready to make space for him.”

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