Report: Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois Want Chelsea's N'Golo Kante at Real Madrid

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistSeptember 13, 2019

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 18: NGolo Kante of Chelsea during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Leicester City at Stamford Bridge on August 18, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images)
Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images

Real Madrid duo Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois reportedly want former Chelsea team-mate N'Golo Kante to join them at the Santiago Bernabeu. 

The Belgian pair have made the move from west London to Madrid in consecutive summers—Courtois in 2018 and Hazard in 2019—and they want Kante to follow suit next year, according to Simon Johnson and Liam Twomey of The Athletic (h/t MailOnline's Jonathan Spencer).

Courtois and Hazard are said to have "told friends" Kante should be Real manager Zinedine Zidane's priority target, not Manchester United's Paul Pogba, who was heavily linked with Los Blancos in the summer.

The centre of Real's midfield is an area that needs addressing. Real spent over €300 million (£268 million) during the recent transfer window, but the majority was on attackers like Hazard and Luka Jovic. 

Of the two midfielders they brought to the club, Takefusa Kubo is now on loan at Mallorca and 20-year-old Alberto Soro at Real Zaragoza.

That means Zidane will have to rely on Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro again in the middle of the park in 2019-20, with 21-year-old Federico Valverde another option in the engine room:

Modric, Casemiro and Kroos are superb players and were crucial in Real's three consecutive UEFA Champions League victories under Zidane from 2016.

But it is arguably a midfield unit past its best. 

Modric may have won the Ballon d'Or last year, but he was poor by his own high standards in 2018-19 and is now 34 years old.

Kante, 28, is a remarkably consistent player who could breathe some life back into the Real midfield with his impressive combination of attacking and defensive attributes:

Chelsea, though, will be loath to let him go if Real do move for him, and the Premier League outfit will be able to demand a huge fee as the Frenchman has a contract at Stamford Bridge that runs to 2022.  

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