Mbappe: Champions League win more important than Ballon d’Or
The Paris Saint-Germain striker, who is already a World Cup winner, would prefer to land top team prizes than prestigious individual awards
Kylian Mbappe has been billed as a Ballon d’Or winner of the future , but the Paris Saint-Germain striker claims he would prefer to land a Champions League crown.
At just 20 years of age, the France international has already achieved more than most manage over the course of an entire career.
He has a World Cup winners’ medal and three Ligue 1 titles on an impressive CV, along with 87 goals across just three full seasons as a senior star.
The expectation is that he will continue to go from strength and strength, be that at PSG or after making a big-money move to the likes of Real Madrid.
Wherever he ends up, Mbappe intends to thrive and continue chasing down major honours.
Collective prizes will remain his priority over the course of what should be a decorated career, with no emphasis being placed on securing recognition as the finest player on the planet.
Quizzed by ESPN on whether he would rather win the Ballon d’Or or a first European Cup, Mbappe said: “The most important thing is to win the Champions League because you can win the Ballon d’Or and not stay in history.
“You play with 10 players, you don’t play alone. If it was tennis, I would say Ballon d’Or because you play alone.
“Football is a sport that you play with a team and I think if you want to win the Ballon d’Or, you have to win the Champions League.
“You can’t win the Ballon d’Or without the Champions League now, it’s so important in the eyes of the world.
“I want to win the Champions League first. If I can win the Ballon d’Or, okay, but my objective is to win the Champions League first.”
Mbappe added on the legacy he intends to leave when the day comes several years from now to hang up his boots: “I don’t want to be the best ever.
“I want to be proud and do my best. I do everything I can do to have success and to win trophies, collective and individual. To do everything is what I want to do.”
Many before him have managed to complement team success with personal prizes, with Mbappe an admirer of the very best in the business.
Asked to name his all-time favourite footballers, the exciting frontman said: “It’s difficult because the football now is different than 20 years ago.
“I could say Pele, but he played in the 1950s, and I could say now [Cristiano] Ronaldo, [Lionel] Messi, [Diego] Maradona, [Zinedine] Zidane.
“There are a lot of players and it is difficult to pick one because when you pick one, you forget every player who had a great career.”
While reluctant to single out individuals, Mbappe admits that two iconic figures with 10 Ballons d’Or between them are among the pick of those to have graced the modern game.
He added: “Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, Zidane, Ronaldinho. They are names that have made history and will never be forgotten.”
Mbappe is hoping to add his name to that list, but will never add a selfish streak to his game in pursuit of such a standing.
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