Chelsea are optimistic of keeping hold of France international N’Golo Kante this summer because of the midfielder’s newly-signed deal at Stamford Bridge.
The midfielder is believed to be a target for Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane with Los Blancos set to undergo a massive rebuilding job this summer window.
Zinedine’s arrival is bad news for Blues’ hopes of hanging onto Belgium international Eden Hazard and the board are now realistic over their chances of keeping the key man this summer, who lists French legend as his football idol.
However, Blues feel they are in a far stronger position to keep N’Golo and are convinced the player will stay at the club beyond summer.
Kante penned a new long-term contract at Stamford Bridge earlier this campaign, making the star the highest paid player at the club.
The French star has shown no desire to move somewhere else during a difficult season and the club feel Kante’s settled in west London, according to a sports TV channel ESPN.
The same cannot be said of Eden and the hierarchy will demand upwards of £100 million to let the winger move to Real Madrid.
The Blues had hoped their transfer ban would convince Eden to sign a fresh contract at the club but Zinedine’s appointment is likely to swing his mind.
The Blues agreed on a deal to land Borussia Dortmund star Christian Pulisic in January transfer market – before their transfer ban was announced – and the American will join up with the team at the end of the campaign.