If Kylian Mbappe was born in Cameroon, he wouldn’t have become the striker he is today, says Arsene Wenger


Former Arsenal and AS Monaco coach, Arsene Wenger has noted that Kylian Mbappe stands less chance in football if he was born in Africa.

The legendary French retired coach who is now involved in football development under FIFA stated this while acknowledging that African football needs help to spot and develop talents like the 23-year-old Paris Saint Germain striker who is currently the highest paid footballer in the world, thanks to his new deal with PSG.

Noted that during the 2003/04 English Premier League season, Arsene Wenger was the man who led Arsenal to an incredible unbeaten run. His team played 38 games without losing a single match. This gave them the nickname “Invisibles”.

According to Wenger, Kylian Mbappe won’t be a top player today if he was born in Africa or played for an African team.

The 23-year-old Frenchman has had an amazing season with Paris Saint-Germain, scoring 29 goals and 17 assists. He recently signed a new contract which earns him £22m per year.

Before the contract, Mbappe was heavily linked with a move to Real Madrid. However, after so many offers were rejected by Paris Saint-Germain, he decided to stay back at the club. Some reports have it that France president Emmanuel Macron advised him to stay at the club.

Mbappe also revealed that he’s happy at Paris Saint-Germain; “I thank the Real Madrid fans, they accepted me as one of their own and I am grateful. I understand their disappointment”.

“I hope they understand the fact I wanted to stay in my country. I want to continue a little longer, and take this club to the heights it can reach in France and Europe.

“I talked with him (Macron), and he gave good advice. Liverpool was also interested in the player but Real Madrid felt more disappointed by his decision to stay back.”

Arsene Wenger revealed that Mbappe has African roots but he wasn’t trained in Africa. He stated that because Mbappe was trained in Europe that was why he has grown to become one of the best players in the world.

His claims signify that the African football system is far behind what is being done in Europe and other parts of the developed world.

The legendary French coach said; “Kylian Mbappe has African roots but was trained in Europe. If he’d been born in Cameroon, he wouldn’t have become the striker he is today. There’s Europe and there’s the rest of the world.

“The latter needs help, otherwise, we’re going to miss a great deal of talent.” This is a wake-up call for African football federations to improve the system. A lot of talents in Africa are not being discovered because of some limiting factors.”


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