En less than 24 hours, Kylian Mbappé managed to bend the French Football Federation on the issue of image rights. After declining a photo shoot as part of the FFF’s marketing operations, the Paris Saint-Germain striker won his case. His refusal observed last March, also for the advertisements of the Blues, had already caused a lot of ink to flow.
The 2018 world champion has therefore decided to take this subject head on and force its leaders to react. It doesn’t matter if the World Cup in Qatar is coming in two months and the Federation already has many problems to deal with lately: Mbappé was determined to move the lines.
“Football has changed”
“After conclusive discussions in the presence of the executives of the French team, the president, the coach and a marketing manager, the French Football Federation undertakes to revise, as soon as possible, the agreement inherent in the image rights which binds it to its players in selection ”, thus explained yesterday the FFF. The Parisian is notably not in agreement with the sponsors associated with his federation, where we find in particular a fast food restaurant and a sports betting operator. Even if he has become an ambassador for Sorare, an NFT platform which holds certain criticisms, Kylian Mbappé wants to manage his image as he sees fit.
Following his extension with great fanfare at PSG last May, the 23-year-old striker had already announced the color: “Football has changed”, insinuating that the question of image rights should be on the table. By evoking in particular his values and a right of scrutiny, Kylian Mbappé insisted on the need to review the positions with his federation. And with this new tour de force, the native of Bondy imposes himself a little more like the dominant character of French football.
The field is no longer enough for Mbappé
With his new contract at Paris Saint-Germain, he already has an essential status in L1. If the penaltygate with Neymar cracked the start of the Parisian season, his coach Christophe Galtier recalled that the number one shooter of the capital club remains Mbappé. According to other echoes of the JDD, the striker would also have had a say in the recruitment of PSG this summer, with the disappointment of seeing certain tracks not succeed (Lewandowski, Bernardo Silva and Skriniar). Finally, about his positioning on the line of attack, he should have been only on the left or in the axis. An attempt by his coach to make him play on the right would not have been at all to the taste of the player and his entourage…
Making it rain and shine at PSG is therefore no longer enough for Mbappé. Omnipresent in the club, he now wants to be in the selection. Victim of racist insults on social networks after his missed shot on goal against Switzerland during the last Euro, the striker had very little appreciated the fact of not being supported by his federation, and in particular by Noël Le Graët. The latter was forced to travel to Clairefontaine this week to face the revolt of Mbappé, supported by the majority of the Blues locker room. Proof that the subject is hot, the threat of boycott assumed by a single player is important enough to bend one of the most powerful authorities in French sport.
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And now, what next? Kylian Mbappé is sportingly essential to Didier Deschamps and the Blues. This victory over image rights gives it even more weight for years to come. While the executives of the French team are aging, the PSG striker still has a good decade ahead of him. Why not the captain’s armband soon? With a Hugo Lloris close to 36, a regularly injured Paul Pogba or even an Antoine Griezmann on the decline, the debate will soon be on the table.