Mbappe arrival ignites Madrid fans and press

rugby04 June 2024 15:00| © AFP
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Kylian Mbappe © Getty Images

Kylian Mbappe's long-awaited arrival at Real Madrid sparked joyous reactions in the Spanish press and among the club's fans on Tuesday, though the French superstar will know he must live up to his billing on the pitch.

The official announcement of the 15-times Champions League winners' latest star signing on Monday was a seismic event in Madrid.

After seven years of rumour and anticipation, Mbappe had finally landed at the "club of (his) dream".

"What you dreamed of", proclaimed the front page of Marca, alongside a photo edit of Mbappe wearing a Madrid shirt, in response to the 25-year-old's social media post in which he referred to the move as "a dream come true".

"Mbappe at last", said sports daily AS, who went on to celebrate "another galactico" in Real's stable, following on from the much-heralded signings of Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham, Luis Figo and Cristiano Ronaldo earlier in the 21st century.

Popular radio station Cadena COPE called Mbappe "the cherry on the cake many years in the making thanks to the fantastic management" of Real president Florentino Perez.

Madrid legend Iker Casillas took to social media to welcome Mbappe to "the best club in the world", adding: "The path to 16 (Champions League trophies) begins with you."


Outside the club's official store in central Madrid, Zein Mroueh, a 52-year-old French fan, believes that Mbappe "has come at the right time", but that "he's going to have to hit the ground running because he's entering another stage of his life".

Despite the glowing reception he has so far received, Mbappe will be under no illusions that he must back up his reputation as one of the world's best players on the pitch in front of the Madrid faithful.

"He's a great recruit, an immense player. But here, he will be just another player in Real's great history," Luis Caceres, president of the Penas federation (Real's supporters' groups) told AFP.

"No player is bigger than Real Madrid. From the very first minute, he'll have to prove himself, play football and show us his qualities. Because if he doesn't, the Bernabeu will make him pay. I've seen people here whistling at Zidane, whistling at Cristiano...

"With what happened two years ago, when he decided to extend his contract with Paris Saint-Germain, Kylian needs to know that he'll have his work cut out for him. When will he be forgiven? When he shows us on the pitch that he's now at the club he loves," added Caceres.