As Monaco continue to steamroll their way to a second Ligue 1 title of the 21st century, so their star-studded team of wonderkids continue to hit the headlines. None are shining more brightly than Kylian Mbappe, and that’s bad news for Arsenal.
The striker – already tipped to be the new Thierry Henry – continued to set new records at the weekend with a brace versus Caen.
It took the 18-year-old to 13 for the season in the French league and 19 in all competitions.
13 – Mbappe is the youngest player to score 13 goals in Ligue 1 for 30 years (18 yo & 3 m), ahead of…Thierry Henry (19 yo & 3 m). Pupil. pic.twitter.com/4lhEcBjtNZ
— OptaJean (@OptaJean) March 19, 2017
Dive deeper into those statistics, and it’s clear that Mbappe is rapidly improving.
Monaco have been keen to avoid playing their protégé too much at such a young age, and he played just 49 minutes of the first nine weeks of the campaign.
But Mbappe has now scored nine times in his last five league starts, and netted in both legs of Les Monegasque’s Champions League tie with Manchester City.
Throw in two goals in the Coupe de France and since February 1 the Bondy-born star has scored 13 goals in 11 games across three competitions.
And all for a player who won’t turn 19 until December.
It’s staggering to think what he could achieve, and it’s equally compelling to wonder where Mbappe will achieve it.
Arsenal have been tipped for a summer bid for months now – largely thanks to Arsene Wenger’s links to Monaco plus the success with Thierry Henry – but we beg the question, why would Mbappe join the Gunners?
Only Alexis Sanchez can match Mbappe’s tally for the campaign, while Monaco have gone further in Europe this year and remain in a title hunt.
So if the teenager did leave this summer, it appears now that a move to Arsenal would be a backwards step.
Not only is he arguably too good for the north Londoners already, but the Emirates outfit are undoubtedly in crisis.
Both Sanchez and Mesut Ozil are yet to sign new contracts, while a civil war is raging among fans over the future of Arsene Wenger.
Plus, Real Madrid and Barcelona were interested while Mbappe came through the famous Clairefontaine academy, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see either Spanish giant make a move for Europe’s next big thing.
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