N’Golo Kante agrees to join Al-Ittihad
N’Golo Kante agrees to join Al-Ittihad as Chelsea Midfielder contract with club expires at the end of June. Kante has struggled with injuries and made a total of nine appearences for Chelsea during this season. He will be joining Karim Benzema Al-Ittihad after his fellow Frenchman left Real Madrid and agreed a three-year deal with them this month.
The move brings to an end a highly successful story in football history for Kante. He helped Leicester City to win the Premier League, 2015-16 season before moving to Stamford Bridge. At Chelsea, Kante won the Champions League, Premier League, Europa League and FA Cup.
He was named the Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year and the Professional Footballers’ Association Player of the Year for 2016-17.
He also played a key role as France won the World Cup in 2018. Chelsea co-sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley said: “N’Golo’s impact and influence during his time at Chelsea cannot be overstated.
“His tireless performances in midfield contributed to several trophy wins and has guaranteed him a place in the club’s history. We wish him well as he embarks on the next chapter in his career.”‘
Kante has signed a three-year contract with Al-Ittihad worth around £86m. He joins five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo in Saudi Arabia.
Several high-profile players have been linked with a move to one of Saudi Arabia’s top sides. But on Tuesday Spurs forward Son Heung-min said he wants to stay in Premier league and earlier this month Lionel Messi joined Inter Miami, turning down a more attractive offer from Saudi Arabia.
Al Ittihad are now in the guidance of former Wolves and Tottenham boss Nuno Espirito Santo and finished five points ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo’s Al Nassr who came second last season. Chelsea signs Christopher Nkunku from RB Leipzig on summer transfer windows.
The Frenchman’s most recent season separated from injuries, however, as he missed 38 matches in all competitions with Chelsea struggling without him and finishing 12th in the league.
Saudi Arabia are signing some of world football’s most desired talent this summer. In 2023 alone, Cristiano Ronaldo moved to the Al-Ittihad on a free transfer, with Ballon D’Or winner Karim Benzema turning down another season at Real Madrid to join him in the country.
That is by no means the end of it with as many as five Chelsea players set to leave the Premier League side for the Saudi Pro League, as the players like Sergio Ramos, Bernardo Silva and Heung-Min Son was said to be offered with similar transfers fees.
N’Golo Kante journey on current season
Midfielder N’Golo Kante plays for Chelsea and hasn’t been involved in many of the side’s Premier League matches in 2022/2023, making seven appearances overall, accumulating 520 minutes of playing time. He has been selected in the starting XI in six of these appearances across their 38 fixtures and been used as a substitute on one occasion.
Kante last appeared in a Premier League match on May 6 for Chelsea against Bournemouth where he created an assist for his side in the side’s 3-1 success. That assist represents his first of the 2022/2023 competition. He has been shown a yellow card once.
On Last season, Kante made 26 Premier League appearances, scored two goals and provided four assists.
Kante moved to Chelsea in July 2016 from Leicester City, where he made 37 league appearances in total, scoring one goal and providing four assists.
It was on August 8, 2015 that Kante made his Premier League debut during his journey at Leicester City, against Sunderland. He debuted at Premier League level for current outfit Chelsea in his team’s encounter with West Ham United on August 15, 2016.
In his Premier League career overall, he has played 227 games in the competition, with 12 goals and 17 assists. Kante, who has been shown 32 yellow cards overall, is yet to be sent off in the competition, despite appearing 227 times so far.