While the praise has been rolling for Chelsea’s new signing over their defensive record so far this term, Kurt Zouma has really stepped up at the heart of the Blues defence.
The defender was expected to be a big player for the west London club when he first joined, but a serious Achilles injury problem hindered his development.
He was then sent on loan to Stoke City and Everton before returning to Stamford Bridge when Frank Lampard took over as club head coach.
It was a mixed first campaign back for the Frenchman, who was in and out of the side throughout the 2019/20 campaign.
However, this season the 26-year-old has been a key member of Frank Lampard’s squad and formed an excellent partnership with veteran defender Thiago Silva at the heart of Chelsea defence.
Zouma has also impressive in the opposition box, with three Premier League goals to his name already and there is one statistic which has proved how influential the Frenchman has been this season, especially when it comes to high ball in Chelsea’s direction.
The CIES Football Observatory have done a list of “the 100 players from the 10 best European league who won the highest percentage of aerial defensive duels since the start of the season”.
And the Blues are well represented at the top of the list, with Kurt Zouma being the number one, having won 26 of his aerial duels out of 27 attempts, an impressive 96.3 per cent.
Kurt Zouma’s 2020/21 season for Chelsea so far:
8 clean sheets
96.3% aerial duels won (1st in Europe)