Raymond Domenech thinks N’Golo Kante is France’s best player and he admits that he would look to sign the Chelsea star before anyone else if he was given a big budget at a major club in the future.
Kante has won back to back Premier League titles with Leicester City and Chelsea while going onto become an integral part of the France team under Didier Deschamps despite only earning his first cap in 2016.
And former Bleus boss Domenech believes that both Chelsea and France are far worse off when Kante isn't in the side.
“You can see there are two French national teams. There’s one when he is playing and one where he’s not,” Domenech told Goal. “You don’t see him in the game but if you look out for him, then you notice all the work he does for the other players.
"He’s the symbol. He makes the others better. If I go to a huge club then the first player I sign is him.
"I think Didier Deschamps knows what happens with and without Kante, he will build his team around him. The same for Chelsea, the same for Leicester City.
“He is the player who makes the team better. He is always smiling, you never get any problems from him as a coach. He is extraordinary. If I was in a club then Kante is the first player that I’d sign.”
Kante is currently sitting out of France’s international games after being afforded extra time to recover from a hamstring injury sustained in his last game for his country against Bulgaria.
France have qualified for the 2018 World Cup in Russia and despite hailing Kante’s influence, Domenech believes that his country rank as outsiders in the competition.
“I think for the World Cup, we have three main contenders. Spain, Germany and Brazil,” Domenech added. “After that we have four or five. Argentina, France, Italy, Belgium and maybe a few more who can get into the semi-final.
“You don’t want Spain, Germany or Brazil early on. France is just behind these three big countries. We are a very young country but the main problem for France is that we have no [Michel] Platinis or [Zinedine] Zidanes.
“We can be a good team but a big player can win you the World Cup. We have no player like Zidane or Platini. They’re very good players but they are not able to be the team’s superstar.”
Domenech had the experience of leading France at a World Cup but it ended in disaster in 2010 when his side finished bottom of the group after he fell out with a number of senior players.
Domenech spoke to Goal at the Wyscout Forum at Stamford Bridge.