French football champions Paris Saint-Germain left Kylian Mbappé out of the squad for a pre-season tour of Japan, casting further doubt on the star striker’s future.
PSG gave no official reason for the omission of France’s captain.
The 29-player squad that flew out on Saturday includes Mbappé’s younger brother, 16-year-old Ethan Mbappé as well as the club’s remaining superstar Neymar.
Mbappé has been taking part in the club’s pre-season preparations and played the last 30 minutes as PSG entertained Le Havre in a training-ground friendly on Friday, scoring a goal.
Mbappé declared in May that he would not extend his PSG contract, which expires next year, but indicated he wanted to remain at the club for a final season.
“I still have a year left on my contract and I am going to honour my contract,”He said.
That would allow him to become a free agent next summer and leave PSG for nothing, a step which has angered the club.
PSG president Nasser al-Khelaifi reacted by saying earlier this month that Mbappé “must sign a new contract”.
Can’t walk away for nothing
“We can’t let the best player in the world today leave for free. It’s impossible,”Khelaifi said.
The club “helped you” and “supported your family since you were a teenager”, the club wrote in a letter to Mbappé.
Meanwhile, the club is under new management with Luis Enrique as coach.
Their Asian tour opens against Cristiano Ronaldo’s club Al Nassr of Saudi Arabia in Osaka, on 25 July.
PSG then play Cerezo Osaka, also in Osaka and Inter Milan in Tokyo before finishing off the tour in Busan, South Korea, against Jeonbuk Motors on 3 August.
Mbappé joined PSG from Monaco in August 2017 in a 180-million-euro deal and has gone on to establish himself as one of the world’s most prominent players