Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma has responded to shaky start

Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma enjoyed a fantastic season last year out on loan at Everton and that meant there was a lot of expectation when he returned to Stamford Bridge in the summer.

But the 24-year-old endured a rocky start at the beginning of the season and it looked like he was slipping down the pecking order of new Blues boss Frank Lampard.

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The centre-back massively struggled on the opening day 4-0 defeat away to Manchester United and there were a few other shaky performances alongside that.

There is serious competition in the heart of defence and it looked the Frenchman would be left on the fringes.

With Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen both having injury problems already this season, it has meant more opportunities for Zouma to turn the corner alongside promising youngster Fikayo Tomori.

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Zouma has certainly redeemed himself in the last few fixtures and is recapturing the kind of imposing form he showed all season at Goodison Park with Everton.

He’s started the last three consecutive games across all competitions and has cut out the sloppy errors from his game.

His physical attributes are the obvious strength to his game and he gives Chelsea an enormous presence in both penalty areas.

(Photo by Catherine Steenkeste/Getty Images)

Zouma still has room for improvement in possession and stepping up in the elite fixtures, but Lampard will have seen him respond to a slow start.

It will be intriguing to see where he fits into the plans when all four centre-back options are available in the first-team squad and he can only continue impressing whenever he gets minutes on the pitch.

A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.