Kylian Mbappe returns to PSG training after 'constructive and positive talks' with club

French striker was left out of squad for Ligue 1 opener against Llorient

Kylian Mbappe is Paris Saint-Germain's record goalscorer. AFP
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Kylian Mbappe has returned to training with the Paris Saint-Germain first team after “very constructive and positive discussions” with the club.

Mbappe watched from the stands at the Parc des Princes on Saturday – alongside France teammate Ousmane Dembele, who joined PSG from Barcelona for €50.4 million – as defending champions PSG were held to a goalless draw by Llorient, with Marco Verratti and Neymar also absent from the squad.

The 24-year-old forward has been involved with a stand-off with the Parisians after refusing to renew his contract that comes to an end next summer when one of the world's best players would be free to leave for nothing.

The World Cup winner was left out of the preseason tour to Japan and South Korea and then trained apart from the first-team regulars last week. Now Mbappe could play when they team travel to Toulouse on Saturday.

“After very constructive and positive discussions between Paris Saint-Germain and Kylian Mbappe before the PSG-Lorient match, the player has returned to training with the first-team group this morning,” PSG said in a statement on Sunday.

PSG did not say if Mbappe had opened negotiations over a new a contract, but positive talks at least point to an improvement in relations that turned increasingly sour after the player said in June that he would not take up the one-year extension to his contract.

PSG then received a world-record $332 million bid from Saudi Arabian team Al Hilal for Mbappe, who reportedly refused to meet representatives from the Saudi Pro League club when they were in Paris last month to sign another player.

League 1 top scorers 2022/23

Mbappe – who has scored a club record scored 212 goals in 260 games for PSG – is widely thought to want to join Real Madrid next season on a free transfer, complete with huge signing-on fee.

It is reported that an agreement is set to be made that will see Mbappe sign the one-year extension to his present deal as originally planned that will allow PSG to sell the player to Real next summer.

Neymar, meanwhile, could be set to join the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema by moving to Saudi Arabia.

Al Hilal are reported to have bid for the 31-year-old Brazilian, who joined PSG in a world-record €222 million move in 2017 but whose spell been hit by regular injury problems and who now looks set to leave the French capital.

Manager Luis Enrique was asked about Neymar's future last week ahead of the Ligue 1 opener. “I will not talk about my discussions with Neymar and Verratti,” the Spaniard said, before leaving both players out of his squad.

“It is in the private domain. I invite you to be attentive to my actions. It is my decisions that will express my opinion.”

Updated: August 13, 2023, 1:36 PM