N’Golo Kante to Al-Ittihad confirmed! Chelsea midfielder joins Cristiano Ronaldo & Karim Benzema in Saudi Arabia | Goal.com UK
Al-Ittihad have confirmed the signing N’Golo Kante, who will officially join the club on a free transfer when his Chelsea contract expires.
- Midfielder ending seven-year stay at Chelsea
- Won six trophies at Stamford Bridge
- Moving to Saudi side Al Ittihad
WHAT HAPPENED? N’Golo Kante is the latest big name to join the Saudi Pro League after agreeing to swap Chelsea for newly-crowned champions Al-Ittihad on a three-year contract. The 32-year-old had been in talks with Chelsea over a new deal but that was never finalised. The French World Cup winner will officially leave the Blues on June 30 and complete a free transfer to Al Ittihad, reportedly for €86 million ($109.78 million) per year.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Kante signed for Chelsea in July 2016 for £30 million after helping Leicester City to the Premier League title the season prior. Nearly seven years on, the defensive midfielder will go down as one of the most important players in the Blues’ recent history, having won the Champions League, Premier League, and FA Cup during his time with the club. Now, he is set to play alongside compatriot Karim Benzema at the Jeddah-based Al-Ittihad, following Cristiano Ronaldo’s transfer to Al-Nassr in January.
AND WHAT’S MORE: Kante has already received a welcome message from Benzema, who said in a video posted on Al-Ittihad’s official Twitter account: “Hi N’Golo! One day I told you that you were the best box-to-box player in the world. I’m happy to play with you again, in the best Saudi team. See you in Jeddah!”
IN THREE PHOTOS:
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WHAT NEXT? Kante will link up with his new teammates at Al-Ittihad, the newly crowned Saudi Pro League champions, in July ahead of the new season – which begins on August 11.