Kylian Mbappe will succeed Lionel Messi and become the best player in the world, according to Cesc Fabregas.

Mbappe hit 33 Ligue 1 goals last term, topping the scoring charts as he fired Paris Saint-Germain to a sixth title in seven seasons.

The 20-year-old struck four times for France in their 2018 World Cup triumph in Russia, finishing fourth in that year's Ballon d'Or voting.

Barcelona captain Messi came fifth, missing out on the chance to win the individual award for a record sixth time, after Argentina lost to France in the last 16.

Asked if there could be a player like his former Barca team-mate Messi in the future, Fabregas told AS: "I think that's probably impossible.

"We've seen the likes of Ronaldo and Ronaldinho, amazing players, but Messi has been the best for 15 years. He's in his 17th season and he's been the best since he was 18 years old.

"I've seen things you wouldn't believe. Every three days he scores goals, he heads off to play for Argentina, he comes back jet-lagged and scores a hat-trick... that's not normal, believe me."

Monaco midfielder Fabregas has been able to watch Mbappe at close quarters since joining the Ligue 1 side from Chelsea in January.

"He's a phenomenon. He's clearly going to be the best player in the world in the future," Fabregas said of the striker. 

"I always think like a midfielder and if I had him in front of me I'd be giving him assists all the time because he's so fast, explosive, but he's also very clever in slipping his markers.

"He has his timing down perfectly. [Thierry] Henry and Diego Costa were also brilliant at that. The thing that stands out about Mbappe is that he's so hungry, he knows how to exploit his ability."

Mbappe's goals helped PSG cope with the injury-enforced absence of Neymar at the end of 2018-19, and the Brazilian has stayed in the French capital despite strong speculation he could return to Barca two years after leaving Camp Nou.

Neymar has not featured this term amid the ongoing rumours about his future and Fabregas suggested Thomas Tuchel is not the right coach for him.

"I played with him. The best players never lose their touch," Fabregas said.

"Sometimes due to things in your head or because you have a coach who doesn't know how to get the best out of you, you play below your ability.

"But if you're a great player, you always will be. And he's a great player."

Kevin De Bruyne claimed his 50th Premier League assist in Manchester City's trip to Bournemouth on Sunday, reaching that mark in record time.

When City's Belgian talisman is in full swing, there is little question he is heading in the direction of being regarded a Premier League great.

The statistic behind his assist for Sergio Aguero's opener at the Vitality Stadium is the case in point, as he set a new record for the fewest matches needed to create 50 goals.

Ironically, he surely cannot claim to have meant this one as his scuffed shot fell to Aguero who swept home, but it has seen De Bruyne reach the 50 mark in just 123 games, nudging to the top of a list of illustrious modern-day players.

 

Mesut Ozil

While the German playmaker polarises opinion, few would doubt his quality at unlocking defences, particularly under Arsene Wenger. Ozil held the record before De Bruyne, recording 50 assists after 141 matches for Arsenal. The 2015-16 campaign brought his biggest contribution, setting up 19 goals.

 

Eric Cantona

A Premier League all-time superstar almost as much for his outlandish personality, notoriety and bizarre quotes as his ability on the pitch. The French attacker was arguably the first real Manchester United idol of the Premier League era, scoring spectacular goals aplenty and crafting them too, hitting the 50 assists mark in his 143rd match.

"When the seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea." Perhaps the famous quote was in reference to team-mates expecting him to provide assists? Probably not.

 

Dennis Bergkamp

The legacy of Dutch great Bergkamp is his penchant for the unexpected. Few players to have graced the Premier League had such a spellbinding impact on the ball, his legendary goal against Newcastle United when he turned Nikos Dabizas inside out – you can decide whether it was deliberate or not – a classic of the genre. He supplied 50 goals to team-mates in 146 matches, a slightly less impressive record than Ozil, though it's unlikely the German will be remembered as fondly by fans as Bergkamp.

 

Cesc Fabregas

The third former Arsenal player on the list – the Gunners have certainly been blessed with some clever, creative talents in the Premier League era. After breaking into the team as a teenager under Wenger, Fabregas went on to become a real midfield force and, arguably, the best in the league for a time. His first 50 assists took 165 matches to reach, though he occupied a significantly deeper role than Ozil, Cantona and Bergkamp.

David Silva

Pep Guardiola admitted on Friday he had doubts about Silva's suitability to Premier League football when he made the move from LaLiga in 2010. Guardiola was one of many, but the playmaker has emphatically proven himself. Across almost a decade, Silva has gone on to be regarded as one of the Premier League's greatest imports, making his 400th appearance for City on Sunday. He took one match more than Fabregas to hit 50 assists, but his consistency and influence on one of the division's greatest dynasties highlight his overall greater impact.

Monaco have agreed a deal with Chelsea to bring Spain midfielder Cesc Fabregas to Ligue 1.

The 31-year-old had been out of favour at Stamford Bridge this season and, with his contract expiring in June, has departed for the French top flight on a three-and-a-half-year contract.

Fabregas joined Chelsea from Barcelona in 2014 and had initially been a key player for Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte, winning the Premier League title under both.

However, Maurizio Sarri's arrival ahead of 2018-19 effectively spelled the end of Fabregas' Chelsea career, as the Italian brought in his former Napoli midfielder Jorginho, who instantly took the Spaniard's position.

The transfer brings Fabregas' long association with English football to an end, at least for the time being, having played 501 times for Arsenal and Chelsea.

"It is a great pleasure to join AS Monaco, a new project for me," said Fabregas. "The group is of quality with young players and a young coach. 

"I'm here to help the team, I'm looking forward to starting, we have a great match to play in Marseille on Sunday. I am very excited."

Fabregas' move also sees him reunite with former Gunners team-mate Thierry Henry.

Henry spoke at a news conference on Monday confirming his interest in Fabregas, whom he claims to have spoken to "three times a week since 2007" when the Frenchman left Arsenal for Barca.

Vice-president Vadim Vasilyev added: "We are very pleased to welcome to AS Monaco Cesc Fabregas, a world-class player and a great professional, whose arrival demonstrates the ambition of the club. 

"This is obviously a very good technical reinforcement for the team but we are convinced that his experience at the highest level will bring a lot to our players on and off the field."

Monaco will hope Fabregas' signing can provide the necessary spark to help them avoid the drop.

Henry's side are second from bottom in Ligue 1 and five points adrift of safety after an abysmal start to the season which has seen them win just three times in 18 matches.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.