Paris: France and Chelsea star N’Golo Kante may be very busy on the pitch but off it, a very different story appears.
According to a report in a section of the media here Tuesday, Kante played the final with a stomach bug and it was evident on the pitch as he played a standard much lower than the ones he had set in the previous games of the tournament.
While his teammates were busy seizing the moment and taking pictures with the trophy, the midfielder very much struggled to get hold of the World Cup before Steven N’Zonzi gave him a helping hand. N’Zonzi had to step in and retrieve the trophy for his midfield friend as Kante was too shy to ask and didn’t want to impose on anyone.
The squad proudly sang Kante’s name at their team hotel in front of their jubilant families and friends. When the team returned here Monday night, Paul Pogba proudly sang a song praising Kante for the way he stopped Lionel Messi during the quarterfinal encounter.
“Ohh N’Golo Kante, ohh N’Golo Kante… He is short, he is nice, he’s the one, who stopped Leo Messi, but we all know he’s a cheater (at cards), N’Golo Kante!” Pogba sang with a sheepish Kante looking somewhat embarrassed in the middle of the huddle. Midfield partner Blaise Matudi also praised the diminutive Kante for his efforts during the Argentina game.
But the unassuming player refused to take the credit alone. “We did it (stopping Messi) as a team. I alone did not do the job,” he told reporters. “We did it as a team because football is a team game,” he added.