Chelsea star N’Golo Kante has been plagued by injuries in recent years.
Chelsea’s interest in West Ham midfielder Declan Rice means they may already have N’Golo Kante’s midfield successor lined up. Kante has been plagued by injuries in recent seasons and hasn’t played since the middle of August.
Chelsea signed Kante from Leicester in 2016 just weeks after the player had helped Leicester stun the football world by winning the Premier League title. The France international went on to lift the top-flight trophy during his first season at Stamford Bridge and has also managed to get his hands on the Champions League, Europa League, Club World Cup and FA Cup during his time in west London.
Kante has played 262 matches for the Blues – but his appearances are becoming more sporadic. Last season, the 31-year-old missed nearly a third of his side’s Premier League matches through injury. And this time around, he has been restricted to just two appearances.
Kante is out of contract at the end of the season and his fitness struggles mean he has become less of an influential figure at Stamford Bridge. So club chiefs will be searching for a player who can take on his mantle. And Rice appears to fit the bill.
Rice’s current contract could keep him at West Ham until 2025. And in the spring, Hammers boss David Moyes dismissed interest in the 23-year-old and insisted he was worth at least £150million. “The first thing to say is that he is not for sale,” said the ex-Manchester United manager.
“If you are interested, well, it will be north of that (100m). One hundred was cheap last summer. One hundred and fifty just now would be minimum but he is not for sale. What I do know is that it means there are only certain clubs that could even consider it.”