Soccer-Mbappe's only focus will be on knocking out Real Madrid - Ancelotti


Soccer Football - Champions League - Paris St Germain Training - Ooredoo Training Centre, Saint-Germain-en-Laye, France - February 14, 2022 Paris St Germain's Kylian Mbappe during training REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

PARIS (Reuters) - Carlo Ancelotti has dismissed any suggestion that Kylian Mbappe's focus on Tuesday's Champions League last-16 first leg between Real Madrid and Paris St Germain could be affected by a potential move to the Spanish side.

PSG turned down an offer of around 160 million euros ($180.98 million) from Real for Mbappe last August, even though the player had less than a year left on his contract.

The France striker, 23, is widely expected to move to Real on a free transfer at the end of this season after resisting an offer to sign a new contract with PSG.

"Every player in the game will be 100% focused on knocking out a team who can compete with them to win the Champions League," Real coach Ancelotti told a news conference on Monday before the fixture at the Parc des Princes.

"Mbappe will be thinking the same as Karim Benzema or Vinicius. Everyone has the same aim."

Ancelotti said he will wait until the day of the game before deciding whether or not to start top scorer Benzema, who has been out of action for three weeks with a hamstring injury but returned to training on Sunday and was selected in the squad.

"I will have the final word after the doctor and the player. I'll have to listen to what they say then decide," said three-time Champions League winner Ancelotti, who coached PSG between 2011 and 2013.

"He has already trained, even if only individually and he'll see how he's feeling. He hasn't played for almost a month, but it's Karim we're talking about. If he's ok, he has to play."

Benzema, who has scored 24 goals in 28 games in all competitions this season, said he would "always play through the pain" for his team and would do so again on Tuesday as long as there was no risk of further injury.

($1 = 0.8841 euros)

(Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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