Who is Kurt Zouma?
Kurt Happy Zouma is a French central defender who plays for Premier League club Chelsea and the France national team.
Born in Lyon, Kurt began his career at age nine with the French club Vaulx-en-Velin until he was 15. He joined Saint-Etienne back in 2009.
Two years later, he signed his first professional deal, agreeing to a three-year contract.
He was subsequently promoted to the first team by manager Christophe Galtier ahead of the 2011–12 term and initially played without a name on the shirt in order to protect the star from media attention.
Kurt made his professional debut at 16 years old in the summer of 2011 in a Coupe de la Ligue match versus Bordeaux, playing the entire match in a 3–1 win.
On 31 January 2014, Kurt joined Chelsea on a five-and-a-half-year deal for a sum believed to be around £12 million (€14.6 million).
The defender remained at Saint-Etienne on loan for the remainder of the 2013–14 campaign.
The star first appeared as a first-half substitute for the Blues in a pre-season friendly versus Wycombe Wanderers.
Following agreeing to a fresh six-year deal with Chelsea on 21 July 2017, Kurt joined fellow Premier League club Stoke City on loan for the 2017–18 season.
On 10 August 2018, he joined fellow Premier League outfit Everton, on loan for the 2018–19 season. The player returned to Chelsea following the expiration of his loan with the Toffees.
What is Kurt Zouma’s international career like?
He has represented his nation at U16 and U17 levels. Kurt played with the U17 team at the UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship and the FIFA Under-17 World Cup, both in 2011.
Zouma has been the captain for his country’s U21 side. He was part of the U20 team that won the 2013 FIFA World Cup in Turkey.
In 2019, Zouma made his first start for his nation’s senior team, played every minute of the match and netted his first senior international goal in the 4–0 away victory over Andorra in a UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying match.
How can we describe Kurt Zouma?
In 2013, FourFourTwo noted the centre-half’s aerial presence, reading of the game, and strength while mentioning his occasional lapses in concentration.
The next year, Zouma was named by British outlet The Observer as one of the ten most promising youngsters in Europe.
Writing after a draw with Manchester City, Match of the Day pundit Danny Murphy noted Kurt’s reliability and confidence against the high-level opponent, in addition to his pace.
Ryan Shawcross called the Frenchman the “ultimate defender” for his speed, shooting, passing, jump and tackling.