Wenger explains why he did not pursue ‘Pele-esque’ Mbappe

Date published: Monday 4th September 2017 11:34

Arsene Wenger says that a price of £165.5million was too high to pay for Kylian Mbappe.

Mbappe was one of the most coveted players throughout Europe this summer after a standout debut campaign with Monaco.

The 18-year-old guided the French club to the Ligue Un title and the Champions League semi-finals, generating interest from a number of clubs.

Arsenal were among them, and Wenger is an undoubted fan of the France international.

“He can be like Pele, there are no limits to his game,” he told Telefoot. “We can already see the difference in the calls he makes. He scores but he also creates – only the very best players can do this.”

Arsenal were linked with the forward throughout the summer, but were never really true contenders considering the economic power of Real Madrid or Paris Saint-Germain.

PSG eventually won the race for his signature, agreeing an initial loan deal with an obligation to sign Mbappe permanently next summer.

“€180m is a little high for us,” Wenger said. “For 90 percent of players, their career depends on their choice of club. Kylian is part of the 10 percent where any choice he makes will be a good one.”

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