Just a day after Euro 2016 came to an end, Chelsea have reportedly made their move for Leicester City midfielder N’Golo Kante.
The 25-year-old was part of the France squad that eventually fell to defeat in Sunday’s final in Paris against Portugal, and while he will now head off on holiday, his club future will become a more prominent issue.
According to The Telegraph, Chelsea have formalised their interest in the player and are hopeful that a deal can be reached even though they have now accepted that meeting the £20m release clause for the player might not be enough.
As noted in the report, it is claimed that the Foxes have received a £35m offer from Chinese club Shanghai SIPG, and so from a financial point of view and in terms of a transfer fee, it’s unlikely that Chelsea will be able to compete.
However, what is in their favour is the fact that the player himself isn’t keen on a move to China and has his heart set on a move to Stamford Bridge, as noted by The Telegraph.
It isn’t expected that the Blues will have to go as high as £35m, but it remains to be seen how negotiations between the two clubs go as they will need to reach an agreement on a fee that both consider suitable.
Manchester United, Arsenal and Juventus have all shown an interest in the French international this summer, but it’s Chelsea who have emerged as favourites to sign him and Antonio Conte will certainly be hopeful that a deal can be tied up sooner rather than later.
The Italian tactician has seemingly made strengthening his midfield a priority based on how speculation has linked him with various individuals, and Kante would certainly fit the bill in terms of what he wants from his midfield general.