19-year-old central defender Kurt Zouma recently expressed his desire to move to Premier League side Chelsea as speculation over the hot property mounts.
However, according to Italian source TuttoNapoli, the player could have already been playing for an established top club as FIFA agent Dario Canovi offered Napoli the opportunity to sign the defender during the summer.
Nevertheless, Serie A side Napoli declined the offer – inexplicably as the Naples-based side are now currently in the market for a new defender. Dario Canovi broke the news to a radio show, adding:
"With the arrival of Jorginho, I have filled in the gaps in midfield. And now we have to operate the Naples defensive because that is the department where there are problems. The big central defender of the level needed I think is in Cagliari and I refer to Astori.
“This summer I suggested Zouma to Naples because I thought he could be right. Yet, the club did not believe us and now January is not an easy time to find a defender at the standard of Naples."
Perhaps it was bad judgement from the Napoli directors not to pursue the transfer of a player regarded by Didier Deschamps as ‘the future captain of France’, or perhaps he is not really up to the required standard for clubs such as Napoli, Chelsea and Monaco.
Interestingly, whilst Kurt Zouma has been on the side-lines following a lengthy ban for a poor challenge during a league match, Saint-Etienne have improved dramatically.
Over the last eight games, the Chelsea linked defender’s side have won six, keeping a clean sheet in seven of those games, lifting themselves into the European places. Following this form and Napoli’s decline, there is an obvious question to be raised. Is Kurt Zouma really that good then?
Whilst the form of one team can never be put down to introduction or exclusion of one footballer, seven clean sheets is a phenomenal achievement and it would suggest that should Kurt Zouma end up at Chelsea in the near future, he may not be as missed as first feared.
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