French international lands at the bet365 Stadium ahead of 2017/18 campaign...
STOKE CITY are delighted to announce the signing of Kurt Zouma on a season-long loan from Premier League champions Chelsea.
The French international completed a medical at Clayton Wood earlier this week before travelling back to West London to complete the necessary paperwork.
The 22-year-old, who is widely regarded as one of the most talented young defenders in Europe, was courted by a host of sides around the continent but has opted to make a switch to the bet365 Stadium.
Confirming his arrival, Chief Executive Tony Scholes told stokecityfc.com: “Kurt is a player that has many admirers within the game, and we are understandably delighted to have been able to bring him to the Club.
“There has been huge interest in him, from both home and abroad, so we are incredibly pleased that he has decided that Stoke City is the right place for him to continue his development."
Manager Mark Hughes added: “Kurt is undoubtedly one of the most talented young defenders in the game, so naturally his arrival will enhance our playing squad for the forthcoming campaign.
“We have prioritised adding further strength in depth to defensive positions this summer, and we have certainly done that by fending off any number of clubs who were all interested in taking Kurt on loan.
“He first caught my attention as a 17-year-old during his time at St. Etienne, and in fact, I actually tried to sign him at that point in his career, but whilst that deal never materialised I am delighted to finally get the opportunity to work with him now.
“On his day he is one of the most impressive defenders in the league, and whilst injury unfortunately hampered his progress at Chelsea last season, we are certain that we can give him the platform to recapture the form he showed prior to his setback.”
Despite his young age, Zouma has already made 144 senior appearances, 71 of which have come during his successful three-year spell at Stamford Bridge.
The powerful and technically-gifted central defender helped the Blues capture the Premier League title in both 2014/15 and 2016/17, although he was restricted to just 13 outings last term after suffering a serious knee injury against Manchester United.