After Leicester City won the Premier League every team wanted their very own N’Golo Kante.
The Frenchman had stunned top flight fans with his performances as the Foxes won a shock title. Sunderland decided to try and bring in a Kante for themselves. The player in question was Didier N’Dong.
Like Kante, he was schooled in French football and the Gabon midfielder played a very similar style of football to that of Kante. Sunderland paid a fee in the region of £13.8 million to sign the player, making him the club’s record signing.
At the time, Sunderland manager David Moyes even stated to The Chronicle:
“We like the look of him, he has good energy, he is young, he will improve with time.
“I think he has a personality to his play.
“I’m not saying he is another N’Golo Kante, but there is a bit of that in his makeup.”
However, two years on and it is clear that Ndong is not the second coming of Kante.
He struggled to find good form in his first season at the Stadium of Light and was again not up to scratch after Sunderland dropped to the Championship. After an unsuccessful stint on loan at Watford the Black Cats, now relegated to League One, are to let him go.
The 23-year-old is set to join Torino in a deal worth around £6.6 million, as reported by The Chronicle. A deal, according to the report, is still in the early stages as they try to agree on personal terms.
Sunderland are therefore set to make a £7.2 million loss on the player, who simply never lived up to the Kante reputation.