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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

N'Golo Kante signs new five-year Chelsea contract after 'two beautiful years'

French midfielder has won a Premier League title and FA Cup in his two seasons at the London club

N'Golo Kante, left, won the PFA and FWA Player of the Year awards after his debut season at Chelsea. AP Photo
N'Golo Kante, left, won the PFA and FWA Player of the Year awards after his debut season at Chelsea. AP Photo

French World Cup-winning midfielder N'Golo Kante committed his future to Chelsea on Friday, signing a new five-year contract, the Premier League club announced.

Kante, 27, has been a mainstay in the Chelsea midfield since joining from Leicester City for a reported £32 million in 2016, immediately after playing a central role in Leicester's remarkable league title triumph.

In his two seasons at Chelsea, Kante won the Premier League title in 2017 and the FA Cup last season. The midfielder then played a starring role in France's victorious World Cup campaign in Russia.

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Individual awards have also made their way to Kante, who was voted PFA Player of the Year and Football Writers' Footballer of the Year for the 2016/17 season.

"I’m happy to extend my time with Chelsea, it has been two beautiful years and I wish for more to come," Kante told the Chelsea website.

"Since I came, I completely improved as a player, challenged myself and got some awards I never thought about. I like the city, I like the club and I am happy to be here for more time."

Considered one of the finest defensive midfielders in world football, Kante has seen a slight change in his role this season under new manager Maurizio Sarri, who has deployed the Frenchman in a more advanced position on the right side of a three-man midfield.

Despite the change, Kante remains as valuable as ever, playing in each of the club's 12 Premier League matches so far and helping them to an unbeaten start to the season.

Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia added: "We are delighted N’Golo has signed a new contract and sees his long-term future with Chelsea. When he arrived, we knew we had signed a special player but he has astounded everybody with his tireless and unselfish displays.

"Off the pitch, he remains a dedicated professional and a humble human being despite the fact he is a world champion and a two-time Premier League winner. We now look forward to five more years with N’Golo at the heart of the Chelsea midfield."

Kante and Chelsea are next in action on Saturday when they travel across London to face Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League.

Chelsea occupy third in the table, four points behind leaders Manchester City.