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Kylian Mbappe will test transfer stance of Liverpool 'target' as Real Madrid confirms move

French forward Kylian Mbappe (C) gestures next to French head coach Didier Deschamps (L) and French Football Federation President Philippe Diallo (R) as they wait for the arrival of French President for a lunch at the team's training camp, as part of the team's preparation for the UEFA Euro 2024 European football championships in Clairefontaine-en-Yvelines on June 3, 2024.
-Credit: (Image: SARAH MEYSSONNIER/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)


Kylian Mbappe will be a Real Madrid player next season. What has long been football's worst-kept secret is now official.

There won't be any sense of real disappointment at Liverpool, where it has long since been known that a transfer is completely out of the question. The only surprising thing is that Mbappe has previously confirmed that he talked to the club as recently as 2022, when even then a move would have been scarcely believable.

Even so, the move to Real Madrid will finally draw a line under that particular rumor, which will come as something of a relief. But in arriving at the Bernabeu, he could set off another wave of transfer speculation.

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Real Madrid has no particular issue with hoarding elite talent. Just look at the fact it has beaten Liverpool to Aurelien Tchouameni and then Jude Bellingham in successive summers, adding to a midfield that already contained Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Eduardo Camavinga and Federico Valverde.

But elite players can sometimes have an issue with being hoarded. Carlo Ancelotti is a masterful man-manager, but even so, the retirement of Kroos probably comes at a useful time when it comes to keeping hold of this crop of generational midfield talent.

With the arrival of Mbappe, there could be a similar issue in the front line. And having given Liverpool and Manchester City a clear transfer answer after the ecstasy of Champions League triumph, Rodrygo could be forded to rethink his stance.

“This week some media said about bids, clubs, interest… I don’t know anything about it and I’m not interested," Rodrygo told reporters at Wembley. "Even if there are proposals, I have no idea about that… I’m staying. I’m happy here. How can I leave Real Madrid?”

No doubt he knew that Mbappe would be arriving when he made those comments. But even if the Frenchman does not immediately prompt a change of heart, he will unavoidably make game time harder to come by, and Liverpool will remain on alert.

Rodrygo, after all, is a hugely exciting talent in his own right. At almost any club not named Real Madrid, he would be a more-or-less guaranteed starter. But having been a substitute for nine league games this season, he can expect to see that tally rise further, with Vinicius and Mbappe both likely to play the majority of available minutes.

Of course, Liverpool has a wealth of forward talent as well, and Mohamed Salah, Luis Diaz, Darwin Nunez, Diogo Jota and Cody Gakpo would all have something to say about Rodrygo waltzing into Arne Slot's starting XI. But with most of those players facing questions of one kind or another, expect speculation over the Real Madrid star to grow if Mbappe does indeed end up curtailing his game time at the Bernabeu.