Mbappé’s Path to a Ballon d’Or

For Kylian Mbappé, the 2023-24 season started with being suspended from pre-season training but may end with Ballon d’Or honors.

The drama began last summer when Mbappé refused to engage in any further contract negotiations with Paris Saint-Germain. The 25-year-old superstar eventually returned to the starting lineup where he has led Les Parisiens to the top of the Ligue 1 table, the final of the Coupe de France, and a place in the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League, where UCL tickets to see PSG, Arsenal, and Manchester City are the most coveted.

As we saw with Lionel Messi who won the Ballon d’Or last year, it’s not just about a player’s accomplishments with their club team, you also have to perform at a high level for your national team. In Messi’s case, he won the FIFA World Cup with Argentina and that cemented his eighth Ballon d’Or.

If Mbappé can lead PSG past FC Barcelona in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, win the Coupe de France, and Ligue 1, then move on to the France national team and win the UEFA Eurpean Championship this summer and a gold medal in the Summer Olympics (if he’s allowed to participate), it will be difficult to come up with a reason to not hand him the Ballon d’Or.

It will be bittersweet for PSG supporters if Mbappé wins the highest individual honor in football. All reports indicate that Mbappé will likely leave PSG when his contract expires at the end of the season and make his dream move to Real Madrid. So, he will be winning an award for what he did in a PSG shirt while representing Real Madrid, one of PSG’s fiercest European rivals. This wouldn’t be the first time this happened, either. I mentioned Messi earlier, who won the Ballon d’Or after leaving PSG for Inter Miami, but George Weah in 1995 also won the Ballon d’Or just a few months after making the move from PSG to AC Milan.

From a PSG perspective, all that matters is the Champions League. If Mbappé can continue PSG’s dream run, get to the finals, and somehow pull off a miracle win, supporters will happily sing his name and give him a proper send-off to whatever club he wants to join. The Paris-native would have delivered every trophy possible to his hometown club, and no one would fault him for leaving. And if he can deliver major trophies for his country this summer, the Ballon d’Or is all his.

Tags Ballon d'Or Kylian Mbappé
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