Al Hilal’s £260m offer for Kylian Mbappe may tempt Man Utd and Chelsea to join bidding war

Kylian Mbappe - Al Hilal’s £260m offer for Kylian Mbappe may tempt Man Utd and Chelsea to join bidding war

PSG are determined to sell Kylian Mbappe rather than see him leave as a free agent next summer – AFP/Franck Fife

A world-record £260 million offer has been tabled by Saudi Arabia for Kylian Mbappe amid an anticipated worldwide bidding frenzy that will include leading Premier League clubs.

Al Hilal, who have already signed Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves and Chelsea defender Kalidou Koulibaly, are one of five clubs to make contact with Paris St-Germain in the last 48 hours. Their formal offer, which comes amid an extraordinary spending splurge this summer by Saudi’s Public Investment Fund, has been sent in writing to the club as European giants prepare rival packages.

Since the French champions put Mbappe up for sale, Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham have expressed interest. Inter Milan and Barcelona are also said to have contacted the club, with the prospect of potential player swaps raised.

Harry Kane would be one candidate, although the prospect of him joining Bayern Munich or remaining at Tottenham appears more likely at this stage.

Insiders describe a “hyper, hyper competitive” market for Mbappe since his omission from the French club’s tour to Japan and South Korea on Friday. Al Hilal are the first to table their offer but others are formulating bids, sources insist.

PSG have made it clear they only want to include players who are committed to the club. Mbappe, one of the best players in the world, has one year remaining on his contract and is unwilling to sign a new one.

His current club suspect he has already agreed to join Real Madrid for free next summer.

The Saudi bid for Mbappe would smash the previous world-record deal struck by PSG to sign Neymar from Barcelona for £198 million in 2017.

Al Hilal, who appear willing to offer Mbappe a deal worth £173.2 million-a-year, have plenty of spare cash after being beaten by Inter Miami to Lionel Messi, despite offering him a proposed £320 million-a-year deal.

Expenditure has been turbo-charged in the Saudi Pro League after Al Hilal became one of four of the kingdom’s top clubs to be taken over completely by the Public Investment Fund as part of plans to eventually privatise them.

Sporting relations between Qatar, which owns PSG, and Saudi Arabia remain challenging, particularly after the BeIN-owned platform for streaming World Cup footage was blocked in Riyadh last year. However, Telegraph Sport reported on Saturday how Saudi would be likely to at least attempt to exploit PSG’s determination to sell Mbappe rather than see him leave as a free agent next summer.

Talks with Madrid, meanwhile, would be likely to revolve around whether the Spaniards can afford a deal to land their long-term target during the current transfer window. They declared a €11.8 million profit in their 2022/23 financial figures last week and revenue up to €843 million.

The SPL has changed the shape of the transfer market with Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema joining their competition. While many of their big-name players have been at the end of their careers, landing Mbappe even for one season would be one of the biggest transfer coups of all time.

As part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, there are aims for the revenue of the league to increase to £400 million annually by 2030.

Turning the domestic league into an international force is just part of a grander, significantly more ambitious scheme that will see the nation attempt to bring the World Cup to the Middle East again.

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