Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Kylian Mbappe have both played big roles in the growth of Marcus Thuram as a big match player.

This according to today’s print edition of Rome-based newspaper Corriere dello Sport, via FCInterNews.

This season has seen Thuram go from strength to strength since joining Inter on a free transfer.

The 26-year-old had arrived with a reputation as a big talent. But not necessarily as a match-deciding player.

Thuram had not been used to playing as an out-and-out centre-forward at Borussia Monchengladbach, or before that, during his time in Ligue 1.

But that is exactly what Inter signed the Frenchman to be.

And Thuram has adapted quickly to the new role that his club have given him.

The 26-year-old has shown a lethal instinct in the penalty area. Having generally played as more of a winger or a free attacker for much of his career, he has found a great level of comfort sticking around close to the goal.

Mkhitaryan & Mbappe Play Key Roles In Marcus Thuram Emergence As Big Match Player

Thuram has scored no shortage of decisive goals this season.

Even just in his few coupe months as a Nerazzurri player, the Frenchman had scored key goals against the likes of Fiorentina, AC Milan, Roma, and Benfica.

Then, most recently, big goals against the likes of Lazio and Napoli followed.

Over the weekend against Roma, Thuram both scored Inter’s equalizer, and essentially forced Angelino into the own goal that proved to be Inter’s winner.

The previous weekend, the Frenchman had a similar impact in the situation that saw Juventus defender Federico Gatti turn the ball into his own net in the Derby d’Italia.

So how did Thuram learn so quickly to adapt to this role on the pitch?

Obviously a lot of credit goes to the player himself for having the qualities and the ability to learn and grow.

And Inter coach Simone Inzaghi has played a big role in moulding the Frenchman. The coach has repeatedly praised Thuram for being a “sponge” in terms of “soaking up” tactical instructions.

Thuram’s strike partner Lautaro Martinez has also gotten the best out of him.

But the Corriere name two teammates in particular who have had a particularly significant impact on Thuram.

One is Inter midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan. The Armenian is no stranger to positional transformation and versatility.

And the Corriere report that Mkhitaryan has been an important presence for helping Thuram grow in training.,

Then, there is Thuram’s international teammate Mbappe.

The Paris Saint-Germain superstar has openly said that he sees Thuram as more of a centre-forward than anything else.

And it has been this boost from Mbappe that has helped push Thuram to play a more decisive role close to goal.