Jack Grealish has named N’Golo Kante as one of the toughest opponents he has ever faced – and he is not alone. These comments from Grealish come just a few months after his Manchester City team-mate Ilkay Gundogan said something similar regarding the Chelsea star.
The 31-year-old midfielder, who has won six major honours with Chelsea since making the £32million move to Stamford Bridge from Leicester City in 2016, has shown during his time in the Premier League his world-class qualities.
Kante is one of the most energetic midfielders in world football and when he’s on top form, as Chelsea supporters saw in last season’s Champions League final win over Manchester City, he is virtually unplayable. Now, Grealish has named Kante as one of the toughest opponents he has faced in professional football.
Speaking to BBC Football, Grealish said: “Number three, I’m going to go with N’Golo Kante. He doesn’t stop running. He’s someone you think you have time, you think you’re away from someone, but he’s always there. He’s everywhere.”
Grealish hit the nail on the head: Kante does not stop running. That’s clear to everyone – and also Gundogan, who said something similar to his Man City colleague last year.
The German said: “If I need to compare position-wise, someone who plays in midfield, probably someone like N’Golo Kante. It’s just the fact that you know you pass him and you feel like he cannot come back anymore.
“And then a couple of seconds later when you think you have a bit of space and time. He is incredible, the amount of work that he puts into the game. It’s just unbelievable.”
Kante was in typical sensational form for Chelsea in last month’s Champions League first-leg win against Lille and Thomas Tuchel heaped praise on the France international, calling him the Blues’ “game-changer”. Tuchel said to BT Sport: “I was very pleased with N’Golo, it took him a while.
“It was not the real N’Golo. He struggled to believe in his game in general. It was good to see him step up today, we see how big the impact is if he is in a good shape. He is our game-changer.”