Osimhen to PSG: First domino falls as Mbappe confirms departure

Things are beginning to fall in place for a potential union between Victor Osimhen and Paris Saint-Germain after Kylian Mbappe announced his departure from the French champions. For months, Mbappe’s future has been a matter of uncertainty after the forward decided not to renew his contract with the Parisians.

With that now out of the way, reports linking Osimhen to the French champions have gained more weight, especially with the club now focused on replacing Mbappe. Osimhen has been mooted as a potential replacement for the Frenchman, despite committing his future to Napoli last December.

Osimhen signed a contract extension that reportedly allowed the Italian side to insert a €130 million release clause – a valuation that many European clubs cannot meet at the moment. The Super Eagles forward was initially linked to Chelsea, but the Blues cannot spend that much without breaching the Premier League’s profitability and sustainability rules after spending nearly a billion Euros in the last three transfer windows.

Osimhen to PSG: First domino falls as Mbappe confirms departure
Photo by Icon Sport

In recent weeks, though, the English side have been reported to be considering a swap deal involving Romelu Lukaku, who is currently on loan at AS Roma, but even that is said to be dependent on Napoli getting Antonio Conte as their next manager. That leaves PSG in a very good position to sign the 25-year-old after Mbappe announced his exit.

Mbappe confirms PSG exit  

In a video posted on his X (formerly Twitter) account, Mbappe confirmed that he would be leaving PSG at the end of the current season, and said Sunday’s Ligue 1 clash against Toulouse will be his last at the Parc des Princes.

Although the former Monaco star did not reveal where he would be going next, he is said to have already accepted an offer from Real Madrid and is keen on joining the Blancos as a free agent in the summer.

Mbappe further expressed his gratitude to the French and said it was an honour to spend seven years at the club and play with some of the best players in the world, adding that he will continue to support the Parisians even after his departure.

“I wanted to speak to you. I've always said that I would speak with you when the time comes, and so I wanted to announce to you all that it's my last year at Paris Saint-Germain. I will not extend and the adventure will come to an end in a few weeks,” Mbappe said in a video shared on X.

“I will play my last game at the Parc des Princes on Sunday. It's a lot of emotion; many years where I had the chance and the great honour to be a member of the biggest French club – one of the best in the world – which allowed me to arrive here, to have my first experience in a club with a lot of pressure; to grow as a player of course, by being alongside some of the best in history – some of the greatest champions; to meet a lot of people, to grow as a man as well, with all the glory and the mistakes I've made.”

Mbappe’s PSG departure frees up funds for Victor Osimhen move

Meanwhile, Mbappe’s departure is the first domino to fall in the chess game that could see Osimhen move to the PSG, as the Frenchman’s departure has freed up funds to make the transfer happen.

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has revealed that PSG will save close to €200 million following Mbappe’s exit. By not triggering his one-year extension, the Parisians will now keep all the money they had budgeted for their star player, while Mbappe will also no longer receive the €80 million loyalty bonus that he was due should he have stayed at the club beyond the current season.

Osimhen to PSG: First domino falls as Mbappe confirms departure
Photo by Icon Sport

This will be the second successive summer that PSG have lost a star player after Lionel Messi and Neymar both left at the end of the 2022/23 campaign. According to Goal, PSG will reinvest the money saved from Mbappe’s departure into rebuilding their squad for next season.

The Parisians are reportedly planning to splash the cash on at least four new signings, and aim to also bring in a star name, a bracket that Osimhen readily ticks. The 25-year-old is currently one of the best strikers in the world, and is also seeking a new challenge after helping Napoli win their first league title in over 30 years last season.

While Osimhen’s numbers have dropped a bit, as compared to last season when he finished as the Serie A’s top scorer, the former Lille sniper has still managed 17 goals and four assists in all competitions this term. Mbappe’s departure makes PSG desperate to find a replacement, and it’s now likely that they’ll throw everything at bringing Osimhen to the Parc des Princes. 

Osimhen to PSG: First domino falls as Mbappe confirms departure
Emmanuel Ayamga

Emmanuel Ayamga is an Asante Kotoko fan and a passionate sports journalist with a little over five years of experience writing about African football.

His articles and features have been published in renowned news media like The Guardian, DW, Al Jazeera and Sportskeeda. His bylines can also be found in the UK journals World Soccer Magazine and These Football Times.