Kylian Mbappe left out of France's provisional squad for Paris Olympics

France's forward Kylian Mbappe
France's forward Kylian Mbappe controls the ball during a training session, as part of the team's preparation for upcoming UEFA Euro 2024 Football Championship, in Clairefontaine-en-Yvelines on May 30, 2024. The UEFA Euro 2024 championship will take place from June 14 to July 14, 2024 in Germany.

Talismanic forward Kylian Mbappe was on Monday left out of France’s squad for the Paris Olympics that will take place in July and August later this year.

The decision to leave Mbappe out of the French squad comes on the heels of the centre-forward’s decision to part ways with Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain (PSG).

Mbappe, who is expected to join European champions Real Madrid after his seven-year stint with PSG, had expressed his desire to represent France at the Olympics on home soil. Even France coach Thierry Henry and Prime Minister Emmanuel Macron wanted Mbappe to be part of the Olympic squad.

Mbappe, however, was not part of Thierry’s provisional 25-man squad that was unveiled on Monday. Instead, PSG’s Warren Zaire-Emery and Bradley Barcola were included, as well as veteran striker Alexandre Lacazette.

“I didn’t draw a line in the hope that something would happen,” Henry told a news conference. “We don’t know what’s going to happen until July 3, but I have to give you a list that’s real. I’ve put together a list that is more in the truth of the moment. Even though the list can evolve. Everything is open to everybody.”

Unlike most international events, clubs are not required to let their players compete at men’s Olympic tournaments. Which could very well be the case if Carlo Ancelotti decides not to release Real Madrid’s reported prized new signing for the Summer Games in the French capital, in which the football event takes place between 24 July and 10 August.

With Mbappé set to play at the Euros for France, his involvement at the Paris Games would have meant he was unlikely to get a break during the offseason.

Still, he said in March that he wanted to be involved: “I have always had the same ambition. I have always said that I wanted to go, but it doesn’t depend on me.”

Even France President Emmanuel Macron had called for Mbappé to be part of the men’s Olympic team.

Macron said last month that he was “counting upon Real Madrid to free up Kylian for the Olympic Games,” despite his widely anticipated move to the Spanish giant still not confirmed.

Crystal Palace’s Jean-Philippe Mateta and Michael Olise have both been included.

France squad:

Goalkeepers: Lucas Chevalier (Lille), Obed Nkambadio (Paris FC), Guillaume Restes (Toulouse), Robin Risser (Dijon)

Defenders: Bafode Diakite (Lille), Maxime Esteve (Burnley), Bradley Locko (Brest), Castello Lukeba (Leipzig), Kiliann Sildillia (Freiburg), Adrien Truffert (Rennes), Leny Yoro (Lille)

Midfielders: Maghnes Akliouche (Monaco), Joris Chotard (Montpellier), Desire Doue (Rennes), Manu Kone (Borussia Mönchengladbach), Enzo Millot (Stuttgart), Khephren Thuram (Nice), Lesley Ugochukwu (Chelsea), Warren Zaire-Emery (Paris Saint-Germain)

Forwards: Bradley Barcola (Paris Saint-Germain), Arnaud Kalimuendo (Rennes), Alexandra Lacazette (Lyon), Jean-Philippe Mateta (Crystal Palace), Michael Olise (Crystal Palace), Mathys Tel (Bayern Munich)

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