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Chelsea transfer just a stepping stone for £30.43m summer signing: Blues’ 9th most expensive player tipped to join bigger club

N’Golo Kante is Chelsea’s ninth most expensive signing of all time following his £30.43m summer arrival from Leicester City, according to Transfermarkt.

In terms of players, only Fernando Torres, Andriy Shevchenko, Eden Hazard, Michy Batshuayi, Didier Drogba, David Luiz, Diego Costa and Michael Essien have cost Chelsea more than Kante.

France midfielder Kante has instantly become a first-team regular at Chelsea, starting all seven of their Premier League games so far this season.

Chelsea are without doubt the biggest club Kante has ever played for – his former clubs include Boulogne and Caen.

However, according to Caen manager Patrice Garande – who signed the player back in 2013 – Kante is using his move to Stamford Bridge as a stepping stone to even bigger things.

Garande told ESPN: “I think from the moment N’Golo came to us in Ligue 2 he had a career plan but without trying to go too quickly,” Garande said. “He had his feet on the ground, and that is why he did two seasons with us, and then left. It’s he who decides.

“I thought [Leicester City] was a good choice and one that suited him, because in his mind going to England in a club like that was a step towards going even higher. He has had a rapid rise, but it has been progressive.

“He was in Ligue 2, then Ligue 1. He goes to England with Leicester, they win the Premier League. Then he goes to Chelsea, and after that he’ll go to a very, very big European club, that’s for sure.

“When he wanted to leave Leicester, there were a lot of clubs who wanted him, and it was he who decided to go to Chelsea. He’s not someone on whom you can impose a decision … you can’t really influence him. He listens, but it’s always him who makes the decisions.”

Kante will face Leicester for the first time since leaving the Foxes this afternoon when his old side come to West London for a Premier League clash.

Chelsea beat Leicester 4-2 in the EFL Cup earlier this season, but Kante was rested for that match.

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