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Chelsea centre-back Kurt Zouma spent last season on loan at Everton and the Toffees are now reportedly determined to sign him on a permanent basis.
Everton captain Phil Jagielka has left the Merseyside club this summer and Everton boss Marco Silva has made Zouma first choice to fill the gap having impressed on loan at the club last season.
Silva see the pursuit of Zouma as a key part of his plans after concluding a deal with Barcelona for Andre Gomes, who also had a loan spell on Merseyside last season.
Gomes reveals he would like to be reunited with the 24-year-old centre-half whose loan deal with Everton has run out, but admits that decision lies outside of his control.
The Portuguese midfielder told reporters: “I can’t decide that. I will leave that for Marcel [Brands, director of football].
“Kurt played really well last season. He’s a fantastic guy and a fantastic player.
“Obviously if Everton wants him I will say to buy him because he’s really good.
“I would like to have him here.”
The 24-year-old centre-back hasn’t played much for Chelsea since he picked up an injury that kept him out for months in 2016.
Zouma has spent the last two seasons on loan, first at Stoke and then at Everton last season. Chelsea are yet to decide what to do with Zouma until the appointment of a new manager, and Frank Lampard has now been confirmed as the club boss.
Asked how it sounds to be Chelsea head coach, Lampard told Chelsea TV: “It sounds good. Surreal to a degree because my playing career here, I don’t think I need to state how much it meant to me, to play 13 years at this place. Home for a long a time in a great era that I was fortunate enough to be involved in.
“Now this is a new chapter and I’m really looking forward to it.
“As I say everyone knows how I feel about the club, my absolute desire is to be here and work hard. I think I did that as a player, trying to get the most out of myself on the pitch, and that’s my intention to do as a manager.”