West Ham sign defender Kurt Zouma from Premier League rivals Chelsea

Arsenal's Thomas Partey (left) Chelsea's Kurt Zouma (right) battle for the ball during the Premier L

Arsenal's Thomas Partey (left) Chelsea's Kurt Zouma (right) battle for the ball during the Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London. Picture date: Wednesday May 12, 2021. - Credit: PA

West Ham United have announced the signing of France international Kurt Zouma until the summer of 2025.

The 26-year-old central defender joins for an undisclosed fee from Chelsea, where he accumulated two Premier League titles, one UEFA Champions’ League winner's medal and one EFL Cup winner's medal during a seven-year career.

A prodigious talent who boasts great pace, strength, technical proficiency and the experience of 165 Premier League and 27 top-level European appearances, Zouma further strengthens manager David Moyes’ top-of-the-table West Ham team ahead of their first-ever venture into the Europa League group stages.

He currently holds eight full international caps with France, having progressed through all junior levels with the national team since the Under-16 age group, and will this week again join up with Didier Deschamps’s squad for their World Cup qualifiers against Bosnia, Ukraine and Finland.

“I’m very happy and very proud,” Zouma said on signing for West Ham.

“My conversation with the manager went very fast. I just felt like he really wanted me to come and join the team, especially a good team that’s started the season very, very well.

“With the great season that West Ham had last year, that gave the team a lot of confidence to improve this year – and I want to help the team do that.”

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Zouma’s top-class credentials made him a long-term and primary target for Moyes, who said: “I am delighted to welcome Kurt to West Ham United.

“He is a player we have tracked for some time, and we have taken great care and diligence to make the transfer happen. He was always our first choice and I am very happy that he is now our player.

“Kurt will join a squad full of players who are hungry and ambitious. He will provide competition to our squad. He is a strong, powerful player with great experience in the Premier League while he is also at a good age for a centre-back.

“Kurt has enjoyed great success at Chelsea and I can see that he is determined to continue being successful here at the London Stadium. Myself, the coaching staff and players are all looking forward to working with him and we wish him all the very best in his career with us.”