Chelsea Strike Gold With N’Golo Kante Signing


Today Chelsea announced their second signing of the summer, welcoming midfielder N’Golo Kante from Premier League champions Leicester City in a £30m plus deal.

That might seem a bit steep for a player that likes to sit in front of the back four and protect his defence. But Kante was a big reason for the Foxes’ success last term.

He was constantly on the move breaking down opposition attacks with his tenacious, well timed tackling and his supreme ability to make countless interceptions. Ultimately his willingness to commit to the role as chief protector was just as important as that as top goalscorer Jamie Vardy and maestro Riyad Mahrez to the Leicester City title winning cause. Like all members of that league title winning squad, Kante is now a legend in the East Midlands.

Chelsea looked extremely fragile last season and often looked soft in the middle of the park with Nemanja Matić not offering the same kind of performances he had done during the 2014/15 Premier League winning campaign.

So new Chelsea boss Antonio Conte would have been desperate to solve a key defensive issue, that should now allow more creative players like Eden Hazard, Cesc Fabregas and Willian a greater chance to shine going forward knowing that they have significant cover behind them.

Conte is a strong personality who likes committed players that aren’t scared of hardwork. Kante has all the characteristics that make him an ideal future Conte foot-soldier. It’s a tad ironic that the former Azzurri coach Conte would state he’d seek advice from Leicester’s Claudio Ranieri about adapting to English football and then the very next day take one of Ranieri’s star players.

N’Golo’s early performances at Euro 2016 would have shown Chelsea that he’s definitely up to the task of playing at Stamford Bridge and helping the Blues climb back up the Premier League table.

Although Kante isn’t known for forward play, don’t underestimate the Frenchman. He can start attacks after winning the ball back and can also make runs with the ball that carries it closer to the opposition penalty area. Last season he managed to create four league assists for the Foxes.

So far N’Golo Kante has made numerous step-ups in his career and so far he has made every single one with ease. In fact he’s actually improved with each new adventure, so I’d expect the new price tag not to faze him and for him to become a regular straight away next term.

I also believe that Chelsea have found their new Claude Makelele, a midfield marshall who will go about his job with minimal fuss and who will elevate his sides chances with his defensive discipline and eagerness to win the ball back at every opportunity.

So it really is an impact signing that could go along way in helping Chelsea challenge again at the top of English football.

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