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Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe celebrates the victory at the end of the Uefa Champions League round of 16 first leg match against Real Sociedad on Wednesday. Image Credit: AFP

Madrid: Real Madrid and Kylian Mbappe may get a second chance to make it work.

Less than two years after what seemed to be a done deal fell apart, the Spanish powerhouse and the France star could have another opportunity to join forces.

Mbappe reportedly told Paris Saint-Germain on Thursday that he will leave the club at end of the season, opening the way for another run by Madrid to sign one of the world’s best football players. There could be a bidding war among several clubs to sign the former World Cup winner, but Madrid are widely considered to be in the front seat.

Mbappe’s arrival would give Madrid one of the top attacks in football, with Mbappe joining Jude Bellingham, Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo. It would also give Europe’s most successful club a great outlook for the future, as Mbappe would the oldest of the four at just 25 years old.

Dream of playing for Madrid

Madrid made a big push to sign Mbappe in 2022, with one of their offers rejected by PSG reportedly reaching €200 million ($215 million).

Mbappe never hid his dream of one day playing for Madrid, but decided at the time that it was best to continue his “adventure” in Paris.

It would be a much cheaper deal for Madrid now, as Mbappe will be a free agent after seven years with PSG. He informed the French club last year that he would not trigger an extension to the contract he signed in 2022.

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Mbappe could make the potent Madrid strike force even more dangerous if he joins the Spanish club. Image Credit: AP

Madrid had failed to secure Mbappe even before that debacle a few years ago, when the player visited the club’s facilities at age 14, but instead decided to join Monaco’s youth academy.

The most-recent failure was a big blow to Madrid fans, who felt it was only a matter of time for the transfer to happen. The only doubts then were about where the young Frenchman would fit in the squad. Madrid supporters had even “welcomed” Mbappe by applauding him at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium when he played with PSG in a Champions League match.

The inability to close the deal led to criticism toward Madrid president Florentino Perez, and even prompted some backlash against Mbappe. Midfielder Federico Valverde said at the time that to be a Madrid player was “a privilege that not everyone can have.”

Ronaldo replacement

Mbappe would have arrived to play alongside Karim Benzema, who left a year later and was never replaced by a top-level forward.

Mbappe could be that replacement, finally giving Madrid a star who could possibly be on a similar level to former Portugal great Cristiano Ronaldo.

Mbappe perhaps could also bring the club back to the “galacticos” era that it enjoyed in the 2000s with players such as Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham and former Brazil great Ronaldo.

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Mbappe takes a shot at the goal against Real Sociedad. Image Credit: AFP

It would be an attack that could potentially rival the success of Barcelona’s trio of Neymar, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, who helped the Catalan club thrive in the late 2010s.

Mbappe’s arrival could also create a line-up challenge for Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti, who has been using a 4-4-2 formation with Vinícius and Rodrygo up front and Bellingham — the England player who is Madrid’s leading scorer this season — playing just behind them.

Attacking trio

Rodrygo has been playing well but would theoretically be the one giving up his place to Mbappe if the Frenchman is signed. Ancelotti could also sacrifice one of the regular starting midfielders — Eduardo Camavinga, Aurelien Tchouameni or Toni Kroos — and play with an attacking trio including Mbappe, Vinicius and Rodrygo.

Mbappe, one of only two players in football history to score a hat-trick in a World Cup final, won five French league titles with PSG but so far failed to lead them to success in the Champions League. Madrid are that tournament’s most successful club, with 14 European trophies in total.

And the Spanish club will likely increase its chances of adding to their trophy case if they can finally bring Mbappe.