The Blancos boss is reluctant to be drawn on speculation regarding potential transfer targets, but he does want two Liga superstars to stay put
Zinedine Zidane considers Kylian Mbappe to be a “great player”, but the Real Madrid boss is reluctant to be drawn on speculation suggesting that the forward could be added to his ranks in the near future.
The World Cup winner on the books of Paris Saint-Germain continues to stall on signing a new contract at Parc des Princes, with reports suggesting that his heart is set on securing a switch to Santiago Bernabeu.
Real would happily open their doors to Mbappe having been heavily linked with the talented 22-year-old for some time, but Zidane is wary of being drawn into a discussion regarding the player.
What has been said?
Zidane has told reporters when asked about Mbappe: “I know him. We know each other well, but he’s not my player so I can’t say anything. He is a great player and we’ll see what he wants to do in the future, but that’s not my concern right now.”
Who else has Zidane been discussing?
While steering around questions on Mbappe, Zidane is happy to offer his take on the futures of two superstars already plying their trade in La Liga.
Sergio Ramos is a Real Madrid stalwart, while Lionel Messi has spent his entire career to date with Barcelona.
Both men are approaching the ends of their respective contracts, with no extensions agreed as yet, but Zidane is hoping to see two winners grace many more Clasico clashes in the years to come.
He said when quizzed on whether Ramos has taken in his last meeting with Barca, as the 35-year-old defender is set to sit out the clash with the Blaugrana on Saturday through injury: “I hope not. He won’t play tomorrow and that’s a shame, but I hope he stays here. You know that.”
On Messi, Zidane said: “He should stay at Barcelona. He’s happy there. It’d also be good for La Liga.”
The bigger picture
Real will play host to arch-rivals Barca boosted by a 3-1 victory over Liverpool in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final showdown.
The defending champions have also moved to within three points of Atletico Madrid at the top of the Liga table, but Zidane is aware of the considerable threat that Messi is about to pose to the immediate ambitions of his team.
He added on the mercurial Argentine: “We know how good Messi is and that won’t change. He might not be scoring against us, but we still know how good he is.
“We’re playing against all of Barcelona, where they’re all good players. We’ll try to limit Messi’s strengths, as we always do, and we’ll try to generally have a good game with the ball.”