Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma has opened up on an exchange with former manager Jose Mourinho which left him ‘shocked’ but left him wanting to prove the Portuguese coach wrong.
The French defender played under Mourinho as a teenager at Stamford Bridge and gave him his Chelsea debut in a 2-1 League Cup win over Bolton, a game in which Zouma scored his first goal for the club.
The 25-year-old went onto play a further 48 games under Mourinho before the coach was shown the door in December 2015.
Zouma has since spent loan spells at both sStoke City and Everton, but up until recent weeks has been a regular pick in Frank Lampard’s starting lineup this season.
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Mourinho took over at Manchester United for two-and-a-half seasons, but is now in charge of Tottenham Hotspur having replaced Mauricio Pochettino in November.
Zouma has now revealed one memory of Mourinho during the coach’s time at Stamford Bridge that left an impact on him.
“He is someone who loves victory. He uses all the tools possible to achieve it,” he told RMC Sport (via Get French Football News).
“I came here at 19 and he played me. I was able to have my chances, I played my matches. I don’t know what other people think, we all have different opinions, but from my side, I don’t really agree (with the notion that Mourinho does not give young players a chance).
“I cannot remember which match we were playing, we were losing 3-1, away from home. The following day, he catches up with me, he takes me to his office, and he asks me if I am ok. I said yes, he asked me if I was sure. I said yes again, he replied: “Because you were rubbish this weekend.”
“Like that, direct. It shocked me, but it made me want to immediately respond (on the pitch). I remember that it hurt me,…