Chelsea midfielder, N’Golo Kante, has revealed how Didier Drogba inspired him in his rise from amateur football, to becoming a top professional at the highest level.
The 25-year-old was an unknown quantity before he moved to Leicester City in 2015.
Kante had been playing amaeteur football into his late teens, before he made it to Ligue 2 with Boulogne and Caen. Within a year, he became a member of the France national team and sealed a move to Stamford Bridge .
“The professional world makes a lot of young amateurs dream, and to go from one to the other can inspire others, like me, when I heard stories of Didier Drogba and [France defender] Adil Rami, who went from being amateurs to becoming pros,” Kante told SFR.
“It was a source of strength, and told me that it was possible, even if you start from a long way off.
“My failures were something for me – my first contact with professional football.
“Though it didn’t go all that well, it’s not a regret, it’s just like that.
“But looking back, those failures helped me consider football differently, consider the pro world differently.
“Perhaps I would have been different, I would have left my home earlier, my family, my friends. I grew up just as my friends did until 19 before leaving home, and it’s because of that I’m who I am now.”