N'Golo Kante joins Karim Benzema at Saudi Pro League champions Al Ittihad

French World Cup winner, 32, signs three-year deal with Jeddah club

N'Golo Kante is leaving Premier League club Chelsea to join Saudi Pro League champions Al ittihad, it was announced on Wednesday, June 7, 2023. Getty
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French midfielder N'Golo Kante has signed a three-year deal with Saudi Arabia's Al Ittihad, a club source told AFP on Wednesday – a day after Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema also joined the Pro League champions.

Kante, 32, underwent a full medical before the contract was signed, the source said.

The departing Chelsea player, who lifted the 2018 World Cup in Russia, has a history of injuries and missed six months of this season with a hamstring problem.

The club source did not divulge the size of the deal, which comes as the Gulf country pursues a host of top players for its domestic league.

On Tuesday, Benzema, the 35-year-old French Ballon d'Or-winner, was confirmed as a major signing for Jeddah-based Al Ittihad, also on a three-year contract.

The latest signings come after Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo joined Al Nassr in January in a deal said to be worth more than €400 million.

Benzema said after signing for the club: "I am looking forward to joining my new teammates and, together with them, help take this amazing club and the game in Saudi Arabia to new levels.

"Cristiano Ronaldo is already there, a friend, which shows Saudi Arabia is starting to further progress its level.

"It’s a good league and there are many good players. I am here to win, like I did in Europe. I am excited to see you in Jeddah.”

Updated: June 07, 2023, 2:54 PM