Meet Kylian Mbappe, the new Thierry Henry targeted by Barcelona, Real Madrid and Man City
Kylian Mbappe is alone in his class. No current players under the age of 18 can touch the Monaco prodigy in terms of stats.
And his progress through the Monaco youth system into the first team mirrors that of a former club legend. His fast feet and eye for goal evoke memories of the great Thierry Henry, whose record Mbappe broke to become Monaco's youngest ever debutant and goalscorer.
With three goals and four assists in eight Ligue 1 appearances, Mbappe is already the envy of Europe’s top clubs.
Despite his obvious ability, with attacking options like Thomas Lemar, Bernardo Silva, Valere Germain and Radamel Falcao at his disposal, coach Leonardo Jardim is in no rush to push the 17-year-old into his first team.
Consequently, there have been lengthy periods between starts. Saturday's 5-0 victory against Bastia marked the youngster’s fifth appearance in the starting line-up, but you have to go back to October for his last – a sparkling performance against Montpellier.
"I am happy for him, he has done well. Our job is to make him progress, he is a young player who is evolving," said Jardim, adding that Mbappe was still "in a learning period".
'The new Henry' is a fast learner. Mbappe creates space for himself with superb control and lightning acceleration that conjures images of the French national team’s most prolific goalscorer.
Skilful with the ball at his feet, he has the ability to pull wide and cut inside or operate as a second striker.
His progress in the principality is being carefully monitored by Barcelona, Real Madrid and Manchester City.
Last summer, Monaco were rumoured to have turned down an offer worth as much as €40 million for the youngster, who is contracted to the French side until 2019.
Smart business based on his performances so far this season. His price tag is only going to go in one direction.