IN AN MBAPPÉ HE’S GONE?
Kylian Mbappé did a penalty against Benfica on Tuesday night, and it made him the all-time leading Big Cup goalscorer for Paris Saint-Germain. Setting aside the fact that it’s a statistic worth the square root of eff all – for the record, he’s now scored 31 eurogoals for les Rouge-et-Bleu, one more than PSG’s other Big Cup nearly man Edinson Cavani, but really, whatever – that should have been the big story of the evening. However, the mood music around Mbappé drowned all of that out … much to The Fiver’s chagrin, given his name is effectively an instant Hanson earworm, and if we have to suffer it then so do you. Ba doo ba doo mmm bop ba doo ba doo do doo mmm baby shark. You’re welcome.
But it’s not music to PSG’s ears either, because their star striker – some status seeing he’s playing alongside Lionel Messi and Neymar – wants away. That’s something of a shock seeing Mbappé had snubbed Real Madrid in the summer to sign a new £650,000-a-week contract, but now he wants to snub PSG and his new £650,000-a-week contract to sign for Real Madrid. Eh? It’s an abrupt about-turn that makes The Fiver’s pea brain hurt – can’t everyone just be happy with their lot [takes gulp of Tin] like the Fiver is? – and seems to be the result of PSG supposedly reneging on a promise to sign Robert Lewandowski, Bernardo Silva and Inter defender Milan Skriniar, while sending Neymar bouncing down the Autoroute du Sud on his backside, back to Barcelona or whoever else in Spain will take him, so fast his shorts have sparks and smoke coming out of them.
This so-called failure of the club to do exactly what a 23-year-old big bairn wants has caused Mbappé to feel “upset”, according to a report on Big Website from Fabrizio Romano, who may well be sending out an “On y va!” tweet about the player rather sooner than he expected. Mbappé, who is also apparently annoyed at being asked to play as a No 9, as opposed to his preferred position on the left, has therefore decided that his needs and wants will be better served at the Bernabéu, and is accordingly agitating for a January move. However, PSG are digging their heels in, insisting they won’t sell, or will sell to anyone but Madrid, while also publicly denying there’s any problem at all. All of which contradictory nonsense suggests this story will run and run all the way until the end of January/time. And you thought that earworm we’ve given you was irritating enough.
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QUOTE OF THE DAY
“We sang 100 songs last night and that was the one that went out. We would just like to apologise to anyone who was offended” – Áine O’Gorman say sorry after footage emerged of the Republic of Ireland team celebrating their passage to next year’s Women’s World Cup – for the first time – by singing a song with a pro-IRA chorus.
The latest Football Weekly podcast is up and available for your aural pleasure.
Gary Lineker will be talking about 50 times football changed the world, later on Wednesday in case you’re at a loose end. There’s also a live Human Rights World Cup Football Weekly preview show. Details and tickets are available here. And if you want even more – of course you do – then there’s an evening with Beth Mead event too.
MOVING THE GOALPOSTS
This week’s edition of our sister email is out now. And you can sign up to get the full version here.
“Re: yesterday’s Fiver. Ugh. I’ve never been more disappointed with The Fiver (and that’s saying something) for joining in with possibly my biggest bugbear. If I buy a 10-pack of Tin and I give you one, you’ve got 10% of my Tin. If you charm your way into me giving you another, you’ll have 20%. But I’m sure The Fiver will agree that this isn’t 10% better, but 100% better. Using the same maths, Steve Bruce’s win percentage at Aston Villa was 45.1% while Steven Gerrard’s is currently 35.1%. So Bruce is (obviously) 28.5% better than Gerrard. Or I would accept 10 percentage points better, I guess” – Phil C0ckburn.
“This was a great article about the two former Brighton goalkeepers (yesterday’s Still Want More?). When I was about 10 in the school holidays, I used to go to watch Newcastle train on a windswept piece of grass up the road from St James’ Park. I would stand behind the goal and fetch balls for the goalkeepers. Dave Hollins always had a smile and a few words, and of course an autograph. A lovely man” – Trevor West.
“Very impressive that not only does Chelsea’s travel wear appear to match their plane’s cream and black colour scheme, but also that of the markings on the runway (yesterday’s News, Bits and Bobs). Still, I guess you’d expect a clash of King’s Road and Milan to be a classy affair” – Jim Hearson.
Send your letters to email@example.com. And you can always tweet The Fiver via @guardian_sport. Today’s winner of our prizeless letter o’ the day is … Phil C0ckburn.