What Chelsea ace N’Golo Kante told Frank Lampard on pitch during Liverpool Super Cup clash
Last season’s Europa League winners lost to their Champions League counterparts 5-4 on penalties after a drawing 2-2 in extra time.
A penalty miss from Tammy Abraham saw Chelsea miss out on their second consecutive European trophy.
Both teams were out on their feet when extra-time came around, perhaps due to them lacking match fitness so early on in the season.
Kante, however, didn’t showcase any signs of fatigue, which surprised many given the fact he played very little pre-season football due to his recovery from a knee problem.
But according to Lampard, the France international told him he was struggling with the pace of the game during the brief interval during extra-time.
The Chelsea chief said: “He said to me at half-time in extra-time that his legs were finished, his legs were dead; and then he’s sprinting 50 yards to cover.”
Lampard was full of praise for the Frenchman, adding: “People keep talking about the young players at Chelsea. Let’s talk about Jorginho and Kante, and I could name a few others. We’ve got a quality bunch in there, a really good group, and we’re working hard.
“I’m trying to instil the way I want to play and there were so many good things tonight. Kante is an amazing player, amazing character. He’s a machine on the football field.
He said to me at half-time in extra-time that his legs were finished, his legs were dead; and then he’s sprinting 50 yards to cover.
Frank Lampard on N’Golo Kante
“He hasn’t trained much, had a swollen ankle two days ago, but he was desperate to play and you saw what he gave to the team today.
“He will be hugely important. I am delighted to work with him.”
The defeat to Liverpool marked Kante’s first start under Lampard, who replaced Maurizio Sarri as Blues boss in July.
Sarri deployed the defensive-minded Kante in a free role in his lone season at Chelsea, allowing the World Cup winner to be a box-to-box midfielder.
And the 28-year-old is more than happy to continue playing in that role if his new manager asks him to.
“I like to play in this position, this is where I played last year,” Kante told Goal. “The coach asked me to play in this positon, I like to do it.
“I know what to do with my teammates and we played a good game tonight.
Chelsea will be back in action on Sunday afternoon, welcoming Leicester City to Stamford Bridge.
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