Chelsea have moved swiftly to snap up Leicester’s N’Golo Kante in a deal worth a reported £30m, despite the French star having a £20m buyout clause.
Kante was one of the stars of last season, powering Leicester to a first Premier League title. Whilst the likes of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez earned all the headlines it was Kante’s performance in Claudio Ranieri’s side’s engine room that have set tongue’s wagging.
The 25 year old, a £6m signing from Ligue 1 side Caen last summer, has been a target for a number of sides with Zinedine Zidane keen to take him to the Bernabeu, Chinese side Shanghai SIPG tabling a huge offer and Arsenal also linked with him, but Chelsea have pushed to the front of the queue in order to get their man.
It’s reported that barely 24 hours after Kante picked up a runner up medal at Euro 2016, Chelsea made their interest known in an attempt to wrap up the deal.
Despite having a £20m buyout clause, Kante’s contract allows him to be sold to the highest bidder and Chinese Super League side Shanghai SIPG reportedly opened with a £35m bid in order to get their man.
But Chelsea are banking on the fact that Kante is not interested in a move to China, instead eyeing a move to West London and feel that their bid of £30m could seal the deal.
Kante has reportedly already rejected a new £100k a week deal with the reigning Premier League champions and Chelsea feel all of this is leading up to Kante joining them.
Kante will be a welcomed addition at Stamford Bridge following the poor showing of Nemanja Matic last season, and their failure to sign Roma and Belgium midfielder Radja Nainggolan.
If signed Kante will join Michy Batshuayi amongst Chelsea’s new summer signings and could be followed by Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly.