N'Golo Kanté Came Through Immense Personal Grief To Win The World Cup

N'Golo Kanté Came Through Immense Personal Grief To Win The World Cup

The astonishing rise of N'Golo Kanté had its crescendo last week, as the indefatigable midfielder completed the journey from the French third division to World Cup winner in the space of five years.

He is a remarkable player, and a story in this morning's French press betrays the kind of resolve that has made such a rise possible.

Kanté's brother Niama died of cardiac arrest just a few weeks before the World Cup began. This is not the only tragedy to befall the family: Kanté was just 11 when his father passed away.

In spite of the loss, Kanté joined up with the French squad and was crucial in their winning football's biggest prize. He was oddly underwhelming in the final - booked and substituted before the hour mark - but, nonetheless, he was of great import throughout the competition.

While Kanté is the opposite to many of his extroverted colleagues - Paul Pogba and Antoine Griezmann spring to mind - he is evidently held in very high esteem among the squad.

The French squad used a visit to the Élysée Palace to break into the song, which roughly translates as "N'Golo Kanté/ He's short, he's nice, he stopped Léo Messi/ But we all know he's a cheater [at cards]/ N'Golo Kanté!"


Heck, even Didier Deschamps joined in.

What a player.

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Gavin Cooney
Article written by
Changed the spelling of his name upon pressure from Michael Owen.

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