Kylian Mbappe put on yet another show as he fired France into the quarter-finals with a brace against Poland. Amid talks of claiming the Golden Boot award, the Frenchman says his only objective in Qatar is to win a second consecutive World Cup.
Two well-taken strikes by Mbappe put the reigning champions through and also has Mbappe in line win the Golden Boot after taking his tally up to five.
Mbappe also provided an assist for Olivier Giroud’s opener at Al Thumama Stadium but insisted after his side’s 3-1 victory that he is not motivated by personal accolades.
“The only objective for me is to win the World Cup,” Mbappe said in English.
“Now to win the next game, the quarter-final, is the most important thing and that is what I dream. The only thing I dream of is this.
“I came here to win this World Cup. I didn’t come here to win the Golden Ball or Golden Boot. If I win it, of course I’m going to be happy but that’s not why I am here. I am here to win and to help the French national team.”
After bagging goals in group-stage victories over Australia and Denmark, Mbappe refused to take part in any post-match interviews and the French Football Federation will be fined by FIFA due to their star man not speaking.
The PSG striker has revealed he will cover the costs of the fines but explained his radio silence following his last-16 exploits.
Mbappe added: “I know people have been asking why I haven’t been appearing in front of the media.
“It wasn’t anything personal, I can assure you of that. I have nothing against journalists but I just needed to focus on the tournament and on my football.
“When I want to concentrate on something, that is the way I function and that is why I did not want to come and speak to you before now.
“I learned that the French Football Federation would get fined and I said I would pay the fine myself because I didn’t think the Federation should pay on my behalf.
“So far things have been going well but we are a long way from the ultimate objective, which is to win the World Cup. Now we have to focus on the quarter-final and that is the most important thing now.”
National team boss Didier Deschamps praised Mbappe’s impact and also paid tribute to Giroud, who set a record and became France’s all-time top scorer with his 44th-minute strike – moving ahead of Thierry Henry onto 52 goals for his country.
“Kylian can change a match in just a moment and he is always playing with such joy and we all want to share those smiles with him. France needed a great Kylian Mbappe tonight and they got one,” Deschamps admitted.
“Olivier is often criticised but he has managed to remain strong, mentally strong and yes he has broken the record.
“It is a very difficult record to break. It was Thierry Henry who held that record before and then there is another guy just beside me (Mbappe) here who might break it one day but to score so many goals at international level is an achievement.”