Barcelona turned down the chance to sign Kylian Mbappe for €100 million from Monaco in 2017 after deciding that Ousmane Dembele was a better fit to replace Neymar.
The Brazilian’s departure to PSG for a world record €222m that summer left the LaLiga giants with a big hole to fill in attack, and they eventually brought in Borussia Dortmund winger Dembele for €105m.
But former Barcelona director Javier Bordas has revealed that they had the chance to sign Mbappe, before technical secretary Robert Fernandez decided he preferred a more natural wide player.
‘When we were to sign Dembele, agent Josep Maria Minguella called me to tell us Mbappe was within reach,’ Bordas told Mundo Deportivo (via Goal).
‘I spoke with Josep Maria Bartomeu and he told me to look at him.
‘I called Mbappe’s father and he told me that we was not going to go to Real Madrid because Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale were there and that instead he could go to Barca because Neymar had left.
‘The president of Monaco preferred that he signed for Barcelona so as not to reinforce PSG, a direct rival. And it could have been done for €100m.
‘Robert preferred Dembele and Pep Segura supported him. The explanation was that Mbappe plays for himself and Dembele plays for the team, and since a winger like Ney had left, Robert preferred a winger more than a finisher.’
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