For Pedro there is a rare new winners’ medal to add to his remarkable collection; for N’Golo Kante, a first European triumph at club level, and relief he was able to feature at all in our dismantling of Arsenal.
A knock sustained in training at the weekend meant Kante’s chances of playing the Europa League final in Baku were rated as 50-50 by Maurizio Sarri on the eve of the game.
But with the help of the Chelsea doctors the Frenchman pulled through and ended up completing the 90 minutes as our midfield got the better of Arsenal’s, a key factor in our eventual 4-1 victory.
‘I was a little bit worried to not play the final because I twisted my knee quite badly, but the medical staff did a good job,’ Kante said.
‘They did everything to get me ready for the final. I am happy to have played and helped the team to win.
‘We are happy because it was the only title we could win this season. It means a lot because we can celebrate this title all together. It’s a beautiful one.’
Pedro is, by some distance, the most decorated player in our squad having tasted plenty of success with Barcelona and Spain earlier in his career. He can now add a Europa League winners’ medal to his collection, which also includes Premier League and FA Cup victories since joining Chelsea in 2015.
‘I can retire now!’ he laughed.
‘Another title is good for me! It’s the first time I have played the Europa League and to win it is special. I’m very happy to score, and now we can enjoy it all together, with the supporters as well who deserve it.
‘We won in a very good way, playing very well and scoring a lot of goals. The first half was even, but we moved the ball so fast in the second half, controlling the ball, passing between the lines and creating chances. It’s an unbelievable feeling for us to win this title. We deserved it.’
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