'The new Thierry Henry' in a 'crazy' market – why an 18-year-old is worth £166m

Kylian Mbappe has joined Paris St-Germain

Two summers ago, Kylian Mbappe was celebrating passing his French high school exams and preparing to play for Monaco in an under-19s tournament.

On Thursday, the 18-year-old striker joined Paris St-Germain – initially on loan – in a deal that will be worth 180m euros (£166m) by this time next year.

The France international became the hottest property in European football as he scored 26 goals in all competitions for the Ligue 1 champions last season.

But why has a teenager with just 46 first-team appearances and one full season behind him commanded a transfer fee usurped only by Neymar’s 220m euro (£200m) move to PSG earlier this month?

Because Mbappe is the ‘new Thierry Henry’

Arsenal were among the clubs reportedly keen on Mbappe, with boss Arsene Wenger likening the teenager to another Frenchman – one who joined the Gunners as a 21-year-old in 1999 and went on to become the club’s record goalscorer.

“Mbappe has similarities to Thierry Henry,” Wenger said earlier this year.