Compared to Claude Makelele, 'Kan' Nampalys Mendy be Leicester City's new midfield lynchpin?
Written by: Neil Talnikar
The 26-year-old was signed by former manager Claudio Ranieri from French club Nice in 2016.
Since Leicester City’s fairytale Premier League victory in 2016, they lost a couple of their key players and once fan favourites N’golo Kante (to Chelsea) and Riyad Mahrez (to Manchester City). However, fans have moved on from their departures and have already found a new cult figure to rave about. Interestingly, it is not their star striker Jamie Vardy. The name is Nampalys Mendy-Leicester’s new defensive midfielder.
The Foxes recently defeated Watford 2-0 at the King Power Stadium, thanks to goals from Vardy and James Maddison. However, when the official website of the club created a poll on Twitter regarding the Man of the Match, majority of fans named Mendy, who wasn’t even a part of the the five-man shortlist. Many fans also expressed on other social media how the midfielder has been a standout performer this season.
The 26-year-old, who was signed by former manager Claudio Ranieri from French club Nice in 2016, had a somewhat hit and miss start at the club as he made just 4 appearances in his debut season and was eventually loaned back to the Ligue 1 side in 2017. However, since his return to England, he has been one of the frequent starters in Claude Puel’s side. The former AS Monaco youngster has appeared five times this season and yet has the second most passes completed from the club behind Wilfred Ndidi. Apart from the fans, Mendy has earned a lot of plaudits from other critics for his solid performances this season.
The player is known for his resilience, intelligence and good distribution of ball. Due to his eye-opening performances, he is frequently compared to former French international and Chelsea star Claude Makelele. Mendy’s rise at the King Power Stadium means the club has found a replacement to Kante with yet another ‘little Frenchman’ at the defensive midfield position.
The Foxes are currently in a good moment as they are unbeaten in their last five games and the fans are hopeful that Puel includes Mendy in their upcoming fixture against Fulham at the Craven Cottage on 5th December.
Published: Mon Dec 03, 2018 09:23 AM IST