Football: Monaco manager quashes talk over in-demand Kylian Mbappe's future with PSG hovering

Monaco L1 football club's forward Kylian Mbappe Lottin takes part in a training session on Aug 11, 2017 in La Turbie.
Monaco L1 football club's forward Kylian Mbappe Lottin takes part in a training session on Aug 11, 2017 in La Turbie.PHOTO: AFP

Monaco (AFP) - Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim insists he is not worried by the ongoing speculation surrounding the future of star striker Kylian Mbappe amid reports that he is close to joining Paris Saint-Germain (PSG).

"I am not going to talk about conjecture. I am staying focused on my work and helping my team to evolve," Jardim told reporters on Friday.

Mbappe, 18, scored 15 times on Monaco's remarkable run to the French title last season, but has been constantly linked with a move away from the principality over the summer.

Real Madrid and PSG are both reportedly desperate to sign the young France international, who is valued at €180 euros (S$289 million).

It is understood that the player, who hails from the Paris suburbs, favours joining PSG, where he would team up in attack with Neymar, signed last week for a world-record fee of €222 million.

On the possibility of Mbappe joining the club Monaco pipped to the Ligue 1 crown in May, Jardim recalled the day saying, "a leading director of a Portuguese club, with whom I had a meeting, said to me: 'The transfer market is not just made to strengthen your team, but also to weaken your rivals.'

"I think that is a strategy used by many. But I am staying calm."

Jardim also evaded a question as to whether Mbappe had informed him of a desire to leave the Stade Louis II.

"The players come to talk to me. I have private conversations with all of them. I try to listen to all of them about their objectives and ambitions.

"It is something I try to do about once a month. And it is not just the case for Kylian."

Mbappe has started both of Monaco's games so far this season, although he didn't score in the 2-1 Champions Trophy defeat to PSG or in last Friday's 3-2 win over Toulouse that began their title defence.

So is he disturbed by all the talk about his future?

"The start of the season differs for every player. Every player has a different way of reaching the top of his form. After that, when there is a lot of movement in the transfer market, the players cope with more or less difficulty. But that is how it is."