The former Arsenal manager feels that it is best to use N’Golo Kante in the role that won him two straight Premier League titles with Leicester and Chelsea
Arsene Wenger made it known very clearly that he views N’Golo Kante’s best position as someone who wins back possession in front of the defence — and has urged Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri not to use him an the more advanced role that we have seen this season. The France international once again started as the most advanced of Chelsea’s three central midfielders in Monday night’s FA Cup fifth round home defeat to Manchester United.
Sarri has made it clear that he does not feel that Kante is capable of playing at the base of midfield in his system, though the player’s countryman Wenger feels otherwise, saying that is where the midfield dynamo thrives the most.
Asked for his opinion on the World Cup winner during the red carpet at the Laureus Awards on Monday night, Wenger said: “Phenomenal. To have a successful team you need to have somebody, or some players, who sacrifice themselves for the team. Don’t talk, do it. When you lose the ball in front of you, he just works for you to win it back and he gives it back in the proper way. People who have maybe a smaller ego, but a bigger spirit of sacrifice, usually they make the difference. We spoke about Brazil, in Brazil they had a player that I bought, Gilberto Silva, who had a similar role in 2002 in the success of the Brazilian national team in Japan.”
Sarri has faced open criticism, from both pundits and fans, for taking Kante out of his natural role of mopping up in front of the Chelsea defence, with the Frenchman recording fewer tackles this season than compared to any other since he made his breakthrough at Caen. Wenger, meanwhile, was handed a lifetime achievement award at the Laureus World Sports Awards 2019 in Monaco on Monday night.
By now, we have come to know that Sarri is one stubborn man, and is to wedded to his principles and style of play to change anything. So, it has come to pass that what he feels is the best position for Kante is where the former Napoli manager is playing him, even if most others disagree with such a plan.
In most cases, judgement should be reserved till season end, but considering how precariously-placed Sarri is when it comes to his job and the nature of Chelsea’s displays over the past few games, those not in agreement have just gotten more ammunition.
Though classifying Wenger among them is not the idea, as he is an experienced head and knows a thing or two about getting the best out of players. It now lies upon Sarri, the decision to continue with his experiment or revert one of his most prized assets to
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