Kurt Zouma first came to everyone’s attention in 2014. Under Jose Mourinho, the Frenchman broke into Chelsea’s starting line-up shortly after moving to the club in a £12m move from St Etienne.
Despite becoming a lynchpin in The Blues squad that won the Premier League title in his season, injury was to hamper his progress. In January 2016, a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee kept him out of action for nine-months. Despite returning in October of the same year, first-team chances came at a premium, as the Frenchman found returning to top form difficult to accomplish.
Road to recovery
For the 2017/18 season, Zouma was shipped out on loan to Stoke City. Signing a new six-year-deal before he left for the bet365 stadium, the confidence to return and succeed was evident. Playing regularly was an important part of recuperating from the injury, and Zouma had a good season at Stoke, but was unable to help The Potters avoid relegation.
Another loan deal followed for the 2018/19 season. The destination was Merseyside. During his time at Everton, Zouma became a fan favourite, with many believing the deal could become a permanent one.
However, Chelsea decided to give the 6ft 3in defender a chance to resurrect his career in West-London. Under the management of Frank Lampard, Zouma started the season tentatively, with some fans frustrated by his performances, believing he wasn’t up to the standard needed.
In recent weeks a resurgent Zouma has proved his doubters wrong. Forming a partnership with youngster Fikayo Tomori.
Impressive form doesn’t go unnoticed
Against Watford, the 25-year-old was at his very best. Leaving fans purring with excitement of just how much the Frenchman has improved in such a short amount of time.
It’s time for the doubters to admit it. Kurt Zouma is Chelsea’s best CB. pic.twitter.com/l9dvN7asha
— JF5 (@ChelseaJF5) November 2, 2019
Kurt Zouma against Watford
✅ Won 6/7 duels
✅ Won 6/6 headers (most)
✅ Completed 5/5 clearances (most)
✅ Made 3 blocks (most)
✅ Made 5 interceptions (most)
✅ 93% passing accuracy
— 𝙵𝚘𝚘𝚝𝚋𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚊𝚙𝚢 (@FootballYannick) November 2, 2019
Incredible statistics for any centre-back. Zouma was outstanding at everything against The Hornets.
Many good performances today, just like to point out one in particular.
After a shaky first couple of games, he has looked solid, and today made a couple of vital blocks.
Take a bow Kurt Zouma
— Charlie Don't Surf (@Chris01044) November 2, 2019
Kurt Zouma has been very good in recent games! Credit where it's due! 💪 pic.twitter.com/XMplZPTgli
— Billy Gilmour (@BillyGilmourSZN) November 2, 2019
There is no doubt the France international has improved immensely. His understanding with Fikayo Tomori has grown into a great partnership. The crazy thing is The Blues still have Antonio Rudiger to return at some point.
For now, Frank Lampard is getting the best out of the Frenchman. Having only turned 25 last week, there’s no doubt he can continue to improve, and become a huge part of what The Blues legend is building at Stamford Bridge.