Rio Ferdinand said it would be tricky to overlook Chelsea midfielder, N’Golo Kante, as the next Ballon d’Or winner if he claims European Championship glory.

Speaking on Vibe with Five, Ferdinand put his point across about Kante claiming the game’s most coveted individual prize.

After a fine second half of the campaign, Chelsea’s tireless engine has been put forward by many to overthrow Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi’s domination.

FC Barcelona v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: Second Leg
(Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Luka Modric is the only player other than the ionic pair to be awarded the Ballon d’Or since 2008.

But with Ronaldo and Messi coming to the end of their tethers, a new sheriff in town will surely soon be announced.

Kante could start the 2021/22 campaign as a Champions League and Euros victor, if France can go all the whole nine yards.

Ferdinand foresees Kante’s future

Permitted Le Blues do win the tournament, Ferdinand felt the 30-year-old would be a shoe in for the Ballon d’Or.

“He’s only really woke up at the back end of the season,” admitted the former Manchester United defender.

“He had injuries before that. Under Frank he was didn’t really play so much and when he did, he wasn’t influential.

“The new manager comes in and like (Antonio) Rudiger, he became an absolute rock in that team.

Manchester City v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League Final
(Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

“He was the man of the match in four of the last five games of that Champions League run, including the final and both semi-final games.

“If he is one of the main players for France and they win it, the Euros, I don’t think you can look past him to be honest. “

Difficult journey to the top

For France to be crowned European champions, they will first have to navigate out of the perceived ‘group of death’.

Germany, Portugal and Hungary stand in the reigning World Cup holder’s way.

Make it through pot F and the French will face members of group D, which contains England.

A match-up between club teammates could well be on the cards, with Chelsea heavily represented in both camps.

Manchester City v Chelsea: Emirates FA Cup Semi Final
(Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

Along with Kante, France have Olivier Giroud and Kurt Zouma in their ranks.

Mason Mount, Ben Chilwell, and Reece James will all be representing the Three Lions.

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