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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Shawcross Praise For Loan Star

Kurt Zouma

RYAN SHAWCROSS believes fellow defender Kurt Zouma is one of the top two central defenders in the Premier League.

The French international has made a major impression at the bet365 Stadium since joining on a season-long loan from champions Chelsea during the summer.

Speaking in the build-up to Monday evening’s clash with Brighton & Hove Albion, Shawcross lavished the very highest praise upon Zouma.

“I think Toby Alderweireld and Kurt are the top two centre halves in the country at the moment,” he boldly stated.

“Kurt is quick, he can jump really high, he can pass the ball, he can shoot, he doesn't get beat one-versus-one - he's like the ultimate defender.

“I think Kurt has done brilliantly during his time here. He's played a lot of games previously and it's a great test for him to come here, into a different environment."

“I wasn't surprised we got him because obviously we've got a good link with Chelsea, but I was surprised they let him go, because I really do think he's going to turn out to be one of the top centre halves in the country.”

He added: “For them to let him come to us for the season is fantastic for us, but it is still surprising.”