Paul Merson has insisted that Chelsea cannot go into next season without Mason Mount and N’golo Kante.
He told Sportskeeda that the task will be too great to get back in the top four next season if the duo are allowed to leave this summer.
Mount has become the subject of plenty of interest from Premier League clubs this summer, who are confident he won’t sign a new deal with the club.
Manchester United are currently leading the race, with Erik ten Hag reportedly a massive fan of the 24-year-old.
Kante on the other hand was reportedly very close to extending his deal which expires this summer. However, things have gone eerily quiet on that front.
Merson has claimed losing both would be extremely detrimental to what Mauricio Pochettino can do with the squad next season.
Merson tells Chelsea to keep Mount and Kante
He said: “After a lorry load of games across all competitions, we still don’t know Chelsea’s best starting XI and we’re at the final game of the season. That just sums them up, really.
“They have too many players and with Mauricio Pochettino set to take over the reins from Frank Lampard, he’s got a massive job on his hands to trim the squad. He won’t want to work with 30-odd players, so I think there could be a bit of a fire sale at Stamford Bridge this summer.
“Two players who shouldn’t be allowed to leave are Mason Mount and N’Golo Kante. Chelsea face an uphill battle to finish in the top four next season, so they can’t afford to sell Mount to the likes of Arsenal, Manchester United or Liverpool, as they’d be strengthening one of their rivals.
“He’s come to a bit of a standstill this season but he was Chelsea’s Player of the Year in 2021 and has a wealth of experience for a 24-year-old.”
On the Kante front, supporters will be hopeful that the reported good relationship between the player and manager will keep him in West London.