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Kylian Mbappe and Liverpool – could the deal of the century really happen?

Liverpool are champions of the world and head and shoulders above the rest in the Premier League for a reason.

You could argue for hours about who their standout individual is and still not find a solution, because the correct answer is they don’t have one.

Virgil van Dijk is the reigning PFA Player of the Year. Sadio Mane and Mo Salah shared the Golden Boot last season. Alisson has conceded just one goal since the start of December. Trent Alexander-Arnold has more assists than anyone since the start of last season. Jordan Henderson is in the form of his life.

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Impossible to pick one out

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Impossible to pick one out

You get the point.

Jurgen Klopp has never been one for indulging in individuals, turning both Borussia Dortmund and now Liverpool into a well-oiled machine based on the collective.

So here’s why Kylian Mbappe is definitely moving to Anfield in the summer.

By definitely I of course mean potentially, but football is a funny old game and some pieces of the complex jigsaw are moving into place.

God like

AFP or licensors
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God like

Juliens Laurens, the French football expert, has fuelled rumours that Mbappe could have his head turned at the end of the season after two years at PSG.

He told ESPN: “It’s pretty simple, if Liverpool can pay the €300m or maybe €350m with the bonuses, and put that on the table – which is what PSG will ask anyone to sign Mbappe.

“If Liverpool can afford that, plus give him the wages that he wants, he will consider that offer every single day of the week, because, yes Real Madrid is his dream and one day there is a certainty that he will play at the Bernabeu for Real Madrid.

“But he’s only 21 years of age so there is plenty time for him to go and play in Madrid one day.

“The fact is that he also would like to play in the Premier League one day, too – and Liverpool is a very attractive proposition for any top player in the world right now with what they are putting together and the project of Jurgen Klopp.”

This came just a few days after Mbappe, in very impressive English, waxed lyrical about Klopp’s side in an interview with the BBC, describing them as a ‘machine’ and admitting ‘everybody watches Liverpool’.

Jeans and sheux

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Jeans and sheux

So let’s talk logistics.

As Laurens pointed out, Mbappe is still just 21 and has his entire career ahead of him despite seemingly embarrassing defences for years and years.

His boyhood dream is Madrid, but he has time on his side and knows that even if he waited five years for the move to materialise he’d still be awaiting his ‘peak’.

Much will depend on PSG’s exploits in the Champions League where, after countless shortcomings, they may finally have the ingredients to win their holy grail.

Peekaboo

Reuters
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Peekaboo

The introduction of Idrissa Gueye has added a necessary steel to their midfield alongside Marquinhos and Marco Verratti.

The Parisiens now have a balance; a sensible midfield not only to protect their sometimes flimsy defence, but also to complement their ridiculous attack.

They impressed in the Champions League group stages, dispatching Real at home before a stirring comeback at the Bernabeu to clinch a 2-2 draw.

The team to usurp are the reigning champions and if Mbappe can’t help PSG beat Liverpool, could he join them?

He years for more silverware

Getty Images - Getty
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He years for more silverware

Klopp has spent just under £10m in the last 18 months – on Takumi Minamino a few weeks ago and youngster Sepp van den Berg last summer – so there’s plenty of money in the bank.

Real, in stark contrast, are in all kinds of financial disarray and will have to shift two, maybe even three superstars before they can even contemplate a deal of Mbappe’s size. Starting with Gareth Bale, who appears to be happy to see out his extortionate contract and frustrate his employers.

From a marketing standpoint PSG can’t compete with Liverpool’s global pulling power and new sponsors Nike would probably double their returns if Mbappe swapped Paris for Merseyside.

The French sensation is an ambitious man and he will know his chances of winning the Ballon d’Or are remote if he stays in France considering PSG’s complete monopoly over Ligue 1.

Liverpool’s famed front three will have been together for three years this summer and Klopp, while they are all tailor made for both him and each other, will be conscious of avoiding complacency.

Three years of bromance

Reuters
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Three years of bromance

Fresh faces bring fresh impetus, raising standards when some might rest on their laurels.

Mbappe could feasibly replace any of the front three or make it a formidable four with Roberto Firmino dropping into a number 10 role.

Liverpool aren’t the Harlem Globetrotters and Mbappe’s wage demands could certainly unsettle the harmony in the squad.

But with a major player like Nike on board and the 21-year-old ready for a new challenge if PSG fail in Europe again, there’s no club around better placed to seal the deal of the century.