Claude Makelele names N'Golo Kante as the best defensive midfielder in world football

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Football News

Football legend Claude Makelele has named N'Golo Kante as the player who he feels is currently the best defensive midfielder in world football.

Makelele is widely regarded as one of the best defensive midfielders of all time, and the effective way in which he shielded the backline and distributed the ball, most notably for Real Madrid and Chelsea, led to the position being dubbed the "Makelele Role".

The former France international believes that there is no better defensive midfielder than Kante in the world and hopes that Chelsea's summer signing can become the best holding player too.


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However, Makelele also claimed that his compatriot has room for improvement and revealed what he must work on if he wants to perfect the position.

When asked by UEFA's website which active player he considers to be the best in his old role, Makelele said, "It is a position where it is difficult to play. You must be a leader. You must work with your teammates in midfield. I like N'Golo Kante, but is he better than me at this? I do not know."

The 43-year-old, who made 217 appearances for Chelsea, continued, "He (Kante) still needs time to fully learn the job, to learn about football. He is a young player I really like, and I hope he will be better than I was."

Similarities between Kante and Makelele

It comes as no surprise that Makelele cited Kante as a player who thinks can surpass him given how well the 25-year-old has performed in a very similar role.

Like Makelele, Kante is positioned just in front of the back four, tasked with breaking up play, protecting his defenders and giving his team's attacking players the platform to go and express themselves.

On the back of his outstanding 2015-16 Premier League campaign, in which he won the title with Leicester City and made more interceptions and tackles than anyone else, Kante forced his way into France's Euro 2016 squad and earned himself a big-money move to Stamford Bridge.

The little Frenchman is an absolute workhorse in the middle of the park, he doesn't stop running and never gives the opposition a moment's rest on the ball. He's strong, quick, aggressive and already demonstrated his worth to Chelsea, starting every game under Antonio Conte.

Makelele has heaped praise onto the midfield dynamo and he will be hoping for a similarly good reception tomorrow night when he returns to the King Power Stadium for the first time since leaving in the EFL Cup third round tie.

Can Kante become as good as Makelele? Have YOUR say in the comments box below!

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Claude Makelele
Real Madrid
Premier League
Frank Lampard
John Terry
Eden Hazard

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