- James was one of the first NBA stars who was criticized for taking nights off
- Mbappe played 63 games for PSG and the French national team in 2022-23
- DailyMail.com provides all the latest international sports news
Soccer star Kylian Mbappe has revealed that LeBron James offered him advice on how to ‘cement’ his legend by helping young people off the field.
Mbappe, a self-confessed NBA fan, sat courtside at the International Games in Paris last week.
The Paris Saint-Germain superstar also recently worked with James on Nike campaign, with Mbappe relishing the chance to pick the brains of the four-time NBA champion.
‘He is much farther along in his career than I am, and projects outside of sport have cemented his place as a sporting legend,’ Mbappe told British GQ.
‘Being able to ask for advice from inspiring figures like him provides an opportunity to adjust my plan and create my own approach that is as effective as possible in terms of helping young people today.’
Kylian Mbappe spoke about football possibly adopting the NBA’s ‘load management’ practices
Mbappe also discussed his relationship with LeBron James, praising his off-court efforts
With team schedules getting increasingly busy in European football, Mbappe also said that the sport may soon mirror the NBA’s ‘load management’ practices.
The Frenchman, 25, played 63 games for PSG and the French national team during the 2022-23 season. He understands why his basketball counterparts try to balance their workloads through an 82-game season.
‘We’re getting closer to the NBA model, with seasons of 70 games,’ Mbappe said. ‘Personally, I’m not against playing that many matches, but we won’t be able to be good every time and give the public the spectacle they expect.
‘In the NBA, players don’t play every game and franchises practice load management. But if I said: “I’m tired, I’m not playing on Saturday,” it wouldn’t go down well.’
Mbappe chats with Brazil legend Ronaldo while courtside for the Nets vs Cavaliers in Paris
The French star currently has 19 goals and three assists for Paris Saint-Germain this season
James was one of the first NBA stars criticized for taking nights off during the season while healthy. Other big names such as Kevin Durant and Kawhi Leonard have also been called out over the practice.
‘The spectator who pays for his ticket, and who may only see you once during the season, wants to see a performance worthy of the name, and that’s understandable,’ he continued.
‘I don’t want to preach, but we need to think together about how to offer the best possible solution so that players, spectators and football’s governing bodies can all embrace it.’
Mbappe has long been linked with Spanish giants Real Madrid but the Frenchman did not rule out playing outside of Europe at some point in his career.
Mbappe has been linked with a move from Paris Saint-Germain to Spanish side Real Madrid
In recent years, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar took their talents to the Saudi Pro League and Lionel Messi decided to join Inter Miami in Major League Soccer.
Neymar and Messi both played alongside Mbappe in Paris before heading to pastures new.
‘Many great players who have shaped the history of football have left Europe this summer, and we are entering a new era,’ Mbappe said.
‘It’s become part of the cycle of this sport, and at some point it will be my turn to leave. I’m not worried about these changes. I’m simply thinking about continuing my career and following my own path.’