Joey Barton says N'Golo Kante 'wouldn't have lasted a minute' v Lampard, Gerrard or Scholes

Is N'Golo Kante one of the greatest midfielders in PL history?

N'Golo Kante is one of the greatest midfielders in Premier League history.

The Frenchman played a pivotal role in Leicester City's odds-defying title win in 2015/16 and he then repeated the feat at Chelsea the following season.

Well, the Blues weren't 5000/1 to win English football's biggest prize, but they certainly weren't the favourites at the start of the 2016/17 season, that's for sure.

But the arrival of Kante changed all that and his instant impact in west London saw him named the PFA Players' Player of the Year for that campaign.

The Frenchman is simply world-class and throughout his career in English football, the very best attacking players in the business have been thwarted by Chelsea's tireless enforcer.

However, former Manchester City man Joey Barton is not convinced that Kante should be mentioned in the same breath as a number of other Premier League legends.

Kante warms up

In fact, Barton has stated that the 29-year-old would "not have lasted a minute" against the likes of Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Paul Scholes.

"Some people think the level of the Premier League has gone up," he said on Robbie Fowler's podcast. "I think it’s gone down.

"I had a discussion the other day about who we’ve played against. Your (Frank) Lampards, (Steven) Gerrards, (Michael) Essiens, (Paul) Scholes, (Patrick) Vieiras, (Roy) Keanes. The creme de menthe of midfielders.

"They talk to me now about N’Golo Kante being an enforcer. I’ve played against N’Golo Kante.

Kante & Lampard

"He wouldn’t have lasted a minute. They were all 6ft4 machines."

Barton clearly doesn't have a keen eye for guessing players' heights...

The 38-year-old is, of course, entitled to his opinion, but the notion that the quality of Premier League football has waned in recent years is a slightly suspect one.

Yes, the action in the English top-flight is far less physical, that's a fact. However, the division is brimming with more world-class players than ever and the standard of football is of the highest order much of the time.

Sorry, Joey, but we're not siding with you on this one, because Kante would almost certainly have competed valiantly against every player named above.

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