Apparently, Thomas Tuchel’s explanation of the situation between him and Kylian Mbappé at the end of last Saturday’s match against Montpellier HSC wasn’t enough and reporters wanted him to go into further detail.
In case you missed the incident, the manager called Mbappé’s number and subbed him off in the 90th minute with PSG up 3-1 and in full control of the match. After Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting ran out onto the pitch, Mbappé is visibly upset with Tuchel attempting to console him and explain his decision.
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The former Borussia Dortmund manager later explained that Mbappé never wants to go out but that he has to respect the other players on the team and his decision. Like clockwork, the Spanish press took note and used it as a reason why Mbappé hasn’t signed a contract extension with the club.
Ahead of the final match in Group A of the UEFA Champions League against Galatasaray SK, Tuchel was once again asked about his decision to take off his star player as reported by ESPN.
“Kylian is not too hard to manage. However, yes, he does have a special mentality. That is normal with his state of mind—his ambitions and his titles. He always wants to win and never likes to leave the pitch.”
“Kylian must accept these are my decisions, though. He has to show respect to the player coming on in his place. I did not take his reaction personally. He was disappointed, but it was forgotten after a few moments because of his respect for Eric Maxim and me—it was no big deal.”
With so much attention on this incident, it’s unlikely that Tuchel will leave Mbappé on the bench even though the result of the match has zero impact on whether PSG finishes first or second in the group. Les Parisiens have already confirmed first place and a loss wouldn’t change that.
PSG desperately needs to start putting together cohesive team performances though. Despite several positive results lately, the team has had to rely on individual brilliance rather than team play and that is something Tuchel will want to work on against Galatasaray.
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