Paris Saint-Germain sporting director Leonardo has fired a terse response to Real Madrid president Florentino Perez over Kylian Mbappe after the Spanish giants supremo spoke publicly about the France international.
Los Blancos pushed to sign Mbappe this summer, but PSG were unwilling to let their star man leave despite him being in the final 12 months of his contract and the La Liga outfit grew more and more public in their pursuit of the 22-year-old as the transfer window wore on.
Mbappe himself has reopened the debate over his future with inflammatory recent comments to RMC Sport and L'Equipe which detailed his desire to swap Parc des Princes for Santiago Bernabeu and Perez seized upon this with another public declaration.
"In January, we will know more about Mbappe," said Perez to El Debate. "We hope that by Jan. 1, Kylian Mbappe's situation will be fully resolved."
Perez later qualified his statement and claimed that his words were twisted and that he had meant no disrespect toward PSG.
PSG director Leonardo to L’Équipe: “It's lasted for 2 years. The transfer window is over, Real Madrid need to STOP behaving like this. They need to stop! Mbappé is PSG player and the club wants this relationship to last. It’s a lack of respect [to PSG]”. 🚨 #PSG @hadrien_grenier— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) October 5, 2021
"My words were misinterpreted," he told RMC Sport. "What I said is that we have to wait until next year to hear any news, always with respect to PSG -- we have a good relationship."
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Leonardo did not see things the same way and responded to Perez via L'Equipe and expressed his outrage at Karim Benzema and former PSG coach Carlo Ancelotti's involvement in the campaign to bring Mbappe to the Spanish capital.
"This latest outburst is just a continuation of a lack of respect towards PSG and Kylian," seethed the South American. "During the same week, a Real Madrid player (Karim Benzema), then coach (Carlo Ancelotti) and now the president are speaking about Kylian as if he was already theirs.
"Florentino Perez has already spoken about Kylian to Real fans during the week. I repeat: This is a lack of respect which cannot be tolerated."
Mbappe and PSG suffered their first defeat of the Ligue 1 season away at Stade Rennais over the weekend while he is now with France for the UEFA Nations League final four in Italy. You can watch all of PSG's Champions League matches exclusively on Paramount+.