Paris St. Germain forward, Kylian Mbappe on Monday played down suggestions that his relationship with Paul Pogba could be impacted after his name came up in a blackmail affair engulfing his France teammate.
Pogba says he is the victim of a multi-million euro blackmail plot to discredit him by claiming he asked a witch doctor to cast a spell on Mbappe.
The claims about the witch doctor were revealed publicly by Pogba’s elder brother Mathias.
Paul Pogba, who left Manchester United in the close season to return to former club Juventus, denies the accusation.
“No because today as things stand I prefer to believe what my teammate says,” Paris Saint-Germain star Mbappe said when asked if there might be a problem with Pogba.
Mbappe was speaking at a press conference ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League game between PSG and Pogba’s Juventus in Paris.
“He called me and gave me his version of events. It is his word against his brother’s word. I am going to trust my teammate,” Mbappe said of his fellow 2018 World Cup winner.
“I think it’s in the interests of the national team as well with a big tournament coming up.
“At the moment he already has certain problems and now is not the time to add to those problems.
“We’ll see what happens but I am quite detached from all that.”
A criminal investigation was launched in France last week into the affair.
Based on the findings of a preliminary investigation last month it will examine allegations — for now against persons unknown — including blackmail by an armed gang, kidnapping and membership of a criminal conspiracy.
Pogba is sidelined for Juve’s clash with PSG on Tuesday and faces a battle to be fit for France’s defence of the World Cup trophy in Qatar starting in November.
He is currently recovering from a knee injury.