(Reuters) - Chelsea midfielder N‘Golo Kante was named Player of the Year by the Premier League on Sunday, adding a third individual accolade to a list of achievements this season that includes winning a second consecutive Premier League title.
The 26-year-old Frenchman, who joined champions Chelsea from last year’s title winners Leicester City in July, has already been named Player of the Year by the Football Writers Association and the Professional Footballers Association.
Kante fended off competition from team mates Eden Hazard and Cesar Azpilicueta, Tottenham Hotspur trio Harry Kane, Dele Alli and Jan Vertonghen, Everton’s Romelu Lukaku, and Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez to win the award.
“It’s a huge honour to be named player of the year... and I want to thank everyone who voted for me,” Kante said in a statement on the league’s website.
Kante has scored one league goal (against Manchester United) and provided one assist this season, but it is his ability to break up play, shield Chelsea’s defence and launch attacks that has been key for the team.
“I work hard in training, I try to give my best and I work with so many very good players; that’s why we won the league two times,” Kante added.
“We played many good games but we won 5-0 against Everton, which was a very beautiful game, and also my goal against Manchester United (in a 4-0 win). It is always good to score and I am happy for these two games.”
Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by John O'Brien