Kurt Zouma believes Chelsea have secured the services of an excellent striker in Colombia international Radamel Falcao, who signed a season-long loan deal with the Blues this month following his departure from Manchester United.
The talented 20-year-old, who will continue to rotate with John Terry and Gary Cahill next season, admits Falcao made a positive impression on him last season despite the South American striker’s struggles with the Red Devils.
“I have played against him twice and he is a really good striker,” Zouma was quoted as saying by the Mirror. “He likes to score goals. His target is only to score goals and he scores well.”
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One suspects Zouma may have been talking about the Falcao of FC Porto and Atletico Madrid, rather than the Falcao of AS Monaco and Manchester United.
Falcao scored a pitiful four goals in 29 appearances for the Red Devils last season, prompting Louis van Gaal to pull the plug on plans to sign the 29-year-old on a permanent contract.
Mourinho confident Falcao will shine
The United manager also rejected the opportunity to sign Falcao on another season-long loan deal, despite the fact he wanted Robin van Persie to leave Old Trafford.
But although Van Gaal clearly believes Falcao is finished as a top-level striker, Jose Mourinho thinks otherwise.
"If I can help Falcao reach his level again, I will do it,” the Chelsea manager was quoted as telling DiercTV Sports by BBC Sport last month. “It hurts me that people in England think that the real Falcao is the one we saw at Manchester United."
Falcao will provide back-up for his former Atletico Madrid teammate Diego Costa, who missed some important matches last season either through injury or suspension.
Chelsea fans were not particularly optimistic about the news prior to his arrival, but are beginning to wonder if Mourinho really can bring the best out of a striker who was, for several years, one of the best number nines on the planet.
Zouma pleased with Begovic signing
Meanwhile, Zouma also believes Chelsea have pulled off a coup by landing goalkeeper Asmir Begovic. The Bosnia and Herzegovina international signed for the Blues in an £8 million deal from Stoke City earlier this week.
“Mr Begovic is a really nice keeper like Petr Cech, like Thibaut Courtois,” Zouma continued. “So in Chelsea we have too many good keepers.”
Zouma knows that additional competition in the squad will only help Chelsea in their pursuit of more silverware.
“When you play for Chelsea, you have to be ready for every game and we know that the competition will be hard because that is normal in a big club,” the youngster added. “Always there is big competition. But everyone is friendly guys and we want to do it for the club.”
Chelsea fans: how many goals do you expect Radamel Falcao to score next season? Tell us by leaving a comment in the box below!