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    Kylian Mbappe and PSG: Deep-Rooted Animosity Unveiled

    Kylian Mbappe’s relationship with Paris Saint-Germain started with great fanfare but is ending amid ongoing tensions and without a Champions League trophy.

    Mbappe joined as a teenage phenom from Monaco in 2017 in a deal worth $194 million. On Sunday, the 25-year-old superstar played his last home game for PSG and scored in a 3-1 loss to Toulouse.

    He was loudly jeered by sections of the crowd at Parc des Princes when his name was announced — two days after finally making it official he is leaving — though Mbappe got a warmer welcome from other PSG fans.

    As the football world discussed his imminent departure on Friday, French champions PSG did not comment on the matter.

    The late-evening announcement by Mbappe may have taken PSG by surprise since it was in a video posted on X, and not through the club’s communication department.

    Between then and the Sunday night kick-off, there were more than 20 posts on PSG’s official feed on X.

    Those included an exclusive look at next season’s home strip, an item on a betting site, a clip of PSG’s women’s team reaching the French Cup final, and kick-off times for the match in different parts of the world — but nothing on Mbappe.

    No tribute was paid to him by the club during Sunday’s game, either, albeit not the last match of the season.

    It was left to the ultra supporters from the CUP, or Paris Ultras Collective, to honour him with a banner and a giant tifo in his image.

    The fracture between the cash-rich Qatari-owned club and its 256-goal record scorer appears to run deep.

    Here’s a look at how relations deteriorated.

    New contract

    PSG may be feeling let down by Mbappe after offering him the most lucrative contract in the club’s history when he signed a new contract in 2022.

    But Mbappe was frustrated because he felt promises to sign key players — notably a top-class centre forward like Robert Lewandowski so he could play in his favored position wide left — were not kept.

    When he signed the new deal, he was paraded in front of fans holding up a jersey with 2025 on it. Mbappé was reportedly annoyed about this, because the contract was until 2024 with the option for an extra year.

    Offer declined

    Mbappe stunned PSG in June last year by informing the club he would not take the option for an extra year. With his contract effectively into its final year, it put PSG in the position of needing to sell Mbappe to avoid losing him for free when the contract expired.

    PSG insisted he would be sold but Mbappe wanted to see out the final year, so the club flexed its muscle by leaving him out of the pre-season tour to Japan in late July.

    Al Hilal came in with a world record $332 million bid, but Mbappe was not interested and reportedly refused to meet with representatives from the Saudi club in Paris.

    Fallout & tensions

    After being left out of the preseason tour, Mbappe posted a photo of himself online after training with some fringe players, stopping to sign autographs outside the club’s training complex.

    The standoff continued when Mbappe was dropped for this season’s opening league game, watching from the stands as PSG drew 0-0.

    With Lionel Messi gone and Neymar on his way to join Saudi club Al Hilal, PSG coach Luis Enrique simply could not afford to keep overlooking Mbappe. He returned in the next league game and scored a penalty.

    Times to leave

    Relations appeared to be repaired for a while, but they took another turn for the worse when Mbappé informed club president Nasser Al Khelaifi in mid-February that he was leaving, although he did not go public until Friday.

    In between times, Mbappé’s relationship with Enrique — knowing his best player would be leaving — reportedly became more tense.

    Enrique showed his authority in recent weeks by either putting Mbappé on the bench or taking him off during important games.

    Lower status

    Mbappe’s near-untouchable status at PSG was suddenly in question.

    When Enrique replaced him midway through the second half against bitter rivals Marseille on March 31, a surprised Mbappe appeared to mutter something negative as he walked off.

    Enrique said he was rotating Mbappe to keep him fresher for the bigger games. They jumped into each other’s arms after PSG knocked Barcelona out of the Champions League quarter finals, with Mbappe scoring twice in the second leg.

    But resting Mbappe made no difference in the semi-finals against Borussia Dortmund, with Mbappe failing to score as PSG lost both games 1-0.

    Once again, PSG fell short in European football’s elite club competition.

    Mbappe’s last PSG match will be on May 25 in the French Cup final against Lyon.

    Chennaitop10