Qatar’s World Cup finalist and Golden Boot recipient has been the face of the Parisians since crowning the FIFA 2018 tournament.
France’s wonderboy, Kylian Mbappe, may soon be wearing the captain armband for the national team, according to the Parisian publication L’Equipe.
After the retirement of goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in January, discussions with coach Didier Deschamps have seated 24-year-old Mbappe to lead the country after prevailing in the last two World Cup tournaments.
Reaching an appearance of 66 games since his call-up in 2017, France’s youngest goalscorer became the second teenager, after Pelé, to score in a World Cup final.
With four goals in the tournament, he acquired the FIFA World Cup Best Young Player Award and the 2018 World Cup final trophy.
In Qatar, Mbappe nailed an incredible hat-trick in the World Cup final loss against Argentina, ultimately finishing as the top scorer in the 2022 tournament.
The former Monaco attacker is vice-captain at PSG behind Brazil’s Marquinhos and will eventually reign in the armband if he chooses to remain with the team.
It is reported that his first game as captain will be Friday’s Euro 2024 qualifier against the Netherlands at the Stade de France.
Under Deschamps, attacker Antoine Griezmann has repped vice-captain and could appear to do so after centre-back Raphael Varane also hung up his boots following the defeat to Argentina in December.
Dark days for PSG
Lionel Messi and his star-studded teammates were subjected to boos from a resentful PSG fan base after this weekend’s 0-2 alarming defeat to Rennes.
Playing at their home Parc des Princes stadium, the Parisian’s four-game winning run in Ligue 1 ended as goals from Rennes’s Karl Toko Ekambi and Arnaud Kalimuendo struck in before the second half.
A disappointing enactment by PSG, coach Christophe Galtier acknowledged that there might be an incoming wave of criticism and speculation regarding his future with the team.
“My only obsession is to be champion. This match will perhaps cause my management to reflect, but we have to put things in context,” the French coach told reporters after the game.
“This match should not call everything into question. There are no excuses, but there are reasons. There are 10 matches left, we are ahead in Ligue 1,” Galtier added.
Sitting at the top of the Ligue 1 standings with 66 points, PSG is slightly ahead of French rival Marseille FC.
The 56-year-old coach voiced the absence of Neymar and defenders Achraf Hakimi, Presnel Kimpembe, Marquinhos and Sergio Ramos as another reason for the loss.
“Losses always upset us. Afterwards, everyone has their reading of the game. You have yours and I have mine,” he said.
“In the current context, with so many absences – though it is not an excuse – we knew that we would have defensive fluctuations.”
Losing four of their seven Ligue 1 games this season against teams currently in the top five, PSG’s campaign to a Ligue 1 title won’t be as effortless.
Amid rumour trades of the big three, the beginning of the end may soon arise for what was once a robust team.