His manager praised the French striker after becoming just the fifth player to cross a century in the history of the club.
After finally hitting 100 goals for Paris Saint-Germain Thomas Tuchel says he is hopeful Kylian Mbappe will go on a scoring streak.
Since netting his 98th and 99th goals for the club during their 3-2 loss to Monaco on November 20, Mbappe had been waiting to seal his place in PSG’s hall of fame.
In Champions League victories over RB Leipzig and Manchester United, the World Cup winner drew blanks and also failed to bring up his century during a 2-2 draw with Bordeaux, but ultimately achieved his long-awaited landmark during Saturday’s clash with Montpellier.
In stoppage time, Mbappe found the net to round off a 3-1 victory at Stade de la Mosson for Tuchel’s side, becoming the fifth player to score 100 goals in the history of PSG in the process.
The 21-year-old is now on the club’s all-time scoring list with Dominique Rocheteau, with only Pauleta (109), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (156), and Edinson Cavani (200) sitting above him, but in far fewer games he has hit the milestone than all four players – 137.
After a three-game scoreless run, Mbappe had faced criticism in some quarters, but Tuchel was satisfied with his overall results and would like to see him kick on when PSG plays host to Istanbul Basaksehir on Tuesday in the Champions League.
His life is not too difficult, is it? He had a good game in Manchester. He had scored in other matches and I was less pleased with him.
“If he keeps working I am very calm. Today I could only say congratulations’. All forwards want goals and I hope we will begin on Tuesday.”
Tuchel also reserved praise for Rafinha, who, following a permanent move from Barcelona to Parc des Princes in the summer transfer window, made a bright start to his PSG career.
“I like the guy. I have known Rafinha for many years,” he said. I watched him in Barcelona with his brother (Thiago Alcantara). He’s an exceptional man with a lot of intellect, super modest, friendly, always attentive. It shows the quality of that guy.
“In Manchester, he had a strong match. He has an exciting new game, and I’m very pleased with him.
In recent weeks, the PSG manager added the improved form of his side and the importance of sustaining those high standards against Istanbul: “We had two very high-level matches, we played a lot of quality with everybody, with good energy. The energy on the bench was also very positive.”
We are a very good team if we are able to stay in the game, to struggle together to sacrifice ourselves, to remain disciplined and strong physically.
“It was necessary to confirm today. Starting tomorrow, we will analyse this match. In sport, you have to keep going and that’s the challenge.”