Thibaut Courtois on his improvement at Chelsea

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois feels he has become a better keeper this season.

Chelsea number one Thibaut Courtois has said that the boost in confidence has helped him command his area better and communicate with his fellow big-name teammates.

The Belgian international joined the Blues from Belgian club Genk in July 2011 but spent the last three years out on loan at La Liga champions Atletico Madrid.

His time in the Spanish capital was a huge success which persuaded Los Colchoneros boss Diego Simeone to seek a permanent transfer last summer.

Jose Mourinho, however, felt the time was right for Courtois to return to Stamford Bridge and remain permanently, displacing former number one Petr Cech as the club’s first choice custodian.

The 22-year-old has stood up to the challenge admirably, and he now believes his new-found extra boost in confidence has improved the one area where he initially struggled.

“That is something that has grown in me. I think now, with my status and reputation, it is expected of me that I should take a lead,” he was quoted as saying by the Sun.

“Even when I was growing up at Genk in Belgium, I was told I needed to command a bit more. I was a shy kid but I’ve worked on it.

“When I was a 19-year-old and just coming into the Belgium team I was playing behind Vincent Kompany and Daniel van Buyten.

“It’s about getting used to it, learning to know what you can say to someone, so that they will not react negatively. At first I was a little afraid to shout — but not anymore.”

Courtois has started 18 matches in all competitions this season, conceding just six goals in his last ten outings including five clean sheets.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for CHELSEA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch