Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has revealed that French centre-half Kurt Zouma will be back in first-team training next week.

The former Saint Etienne enforcer suffered a serious knee injury last season and has spent the last six months away from the game and rehabilitating.

Zouma is held in high regard at Stamford Bridge, with many believing the 21-year-old has all the attributes to be John Terry’s long-term successor.

Conte has stated that the Lyon-born centre-half is on the mend and is expected to be back among Chelsea’s superstar squad next week.

“I am waiting on him. This week he came back to the training sessions with the Under-21s and next week I want him to come with us and start a new life for him,” West London Sport report the Italian as saying.

Chelsea recently reverted to a three-man central defensive system, which has heralded a number of improved performances and consecutive victories.

As such, Zouma could well have an important role to play in the Blues’ push for a top-four finish and potentially a Premier League title challenge this season.

Having the France international fit and on his best form could well impact the West London outfit’s approach to the transfer market, with Chelsea being linked with a host of new defenders of late.

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