France’s Kylian Mbappe celebrates after a goal during the Euro 2024 group B qualifying soccer match between France and Gibraltar in Nice, France, Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole)
Mbappe achieved the feat over the weekend in a 14-0 rout of Gibraltar at the age of 24 years and 333 days and former France great Henry was all praise speaking about his countryman’s feat.
Kylian Mbappe netted his 300th career goals faster than Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. Former France great Thierry Henry has nothing but admiration.
Mbappé achieved the feat over the weekend in a 14-0 rout of Gibraltar at the age of 24 years and 333 days. Both Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, the game’s two biggest stars in the 21st century, were older when they reached the milestone.
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“What this kid is doing is really out of this world,” said Henry, who is now in charge of leading the new generation of France’s players as coach of the Under-21 team. “It’s just unbelievable.”
Mbappé was often compared to Henry earlier in his career. Both attended France’s Clairefontaine academy before playing as left-wingers at Monaco, where each won the French league titles as a teenager. Mbappé then replicated another of Henry’s accomplishments when he won the 2018 World Cup in his first major tournament with France. Henry won the 1998 tournament.
Mbappé has also been compared with Brazil’s great Pelé for his precocity. But in terms of style, with his devastating speed and skills, he is closer to Henry.
“He’s a goalscorer, he delivers assists, he knows how to do everything,” Henry said. “Of course, there’s room for improvement, but that’s not the point.”
With his 17th career hat-trick, Mbappé brought his season tally to 21 goals in 19 matches. It was the PSG star’s 46th goal in 74 international appearances. He is now just five goals behind Henry on France’s all-time scoring list and 10 off teammate Olivier Giroud’s national record total.
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The exact number of goals in Pelé’s career will forever be debated. He often said one of the reasons he should be considered the greatest player of all time was because of his feat of scoring more than 1,000 goals. But many dispute his count because Pelé included goals scored in friendlies or matches against semi-professional or even amateur teams.
When asked how many goals Mbappé could reach, Henry jokingly hinted at the 1,000 mark, then said “It’s up for him to decide.”
“He’s a guy who breathes football, who prepares himself well, who doesn’t do everything and anything, his professionalism and desire to play are always there,” Henry said. “300 goals? There are some who haven’t even managed that in training.”
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – Associated Press)