N’Golo Kante remains keen to stay at Chelsea despite reports in the Spanish media linking him with a transfer to Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Kante has missed 20 of Chelsea’s 42 games this season due to a host of injuries to his hamstring, knee and ankle, and concerns over his long-term fitness have seen Mateo Kovacic and Jorginho strike up a good partnership in his absence.
Meanwhile, Billy Gilmour’s emergence and Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s return from injury add to Frank Lampard’s options with Ross Barkley and Mason Mount also in the squad.
Chelsea are also monitoring Lille’s 21-year-old midfielder Boubakary Soumare but he currently ranks lower on the club’s priority list than a left-back and another forward.
Manager Lampard is yet to signal to any of his first-team squad whether or not they will be surplus to requirements in the off-season as he bids to create a competitive training environment until the end of the coronavirus-hit campaign.
Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has long been an admirer of Kante and is said to be looking for a back-up option for Casemiro, with Rennes’ 17-year-old wonderkid Eduardo Camavinga and Soumare also on the Blancos’ shortlist.
But Kante, who is currently Chelsea’s highest-paid player on £290,000 ($362k) per week, is unlikely to accept a back-up role.
Source: News update