Could N’Golo Kanté be ready for Chelsea’s Champions League tie with Real Madrid?
Kanté returned to action with the U21 team after spending seven months out. His goal is to be ready for the Champions League clash with Real Madrid.
Seven months is a long time in football, but that’s how long N’Golo Kanté has been sidelined with muscular problems. The France international has not featured since August, a 2-2 draw against Tottenham in the Premier League. The Chelsea midfielder played 60 minutes for Chelsea’s U21 side against Charlton last week.
Kanté was not alone in his return to action. Graham Potter, Chelsea’s head coach, kept a close eye on his progress and Mason Mount and Thiago Silva were also watching his comeback. Both team-mates donned Chelsea shirts with the French player’s name and number on them. The rain that fell throughout the match didn’t prevent them from enjoying Kanté return in a nice gesture of encouragement and recognition of his importance in the Stamford Bridge dressing room.
Real Madrid the objective
Chelsea’s next matches include fixtures against Aston Villa, Liverpool and Wolves in the league before the match on 12 April against Real Madrid in the Champions League. The Premier League matches will help Kanté get some match fitness ahead of the game against Real Madrid, a club which he always shines against.
At 31, Kanté still has plenty of football left in him. The midfielder is in the midst of negotiations with the Stamford Bridge board to extend his contract, which expires on 30 June 2023. Potter has been waiting for him with open arms ever since he took over at the London club. And Chelsea, with problems in midfield, perform better with Kanté on the pitch. A warning for Madrid: Kanté is back.