Michael Owen says Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma “fills you with a bit of fear” after watching him during their 0-0 draw against Sevilla on Tuesday night.
Zouma had the best chance of a frustrating west London night, the France defender’s free header losing all sting through a deflection.
Frank Lampard’s Chelsea ended the night with all six of their £200million summer signings on the pitch for the first time.
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But despite flashes of promise the Blues boss is yet to find the best fit for his expensively assembled jigsaw.
Lampard will doubtless have been puzzled by this stalemate – with his regimented but uninspired Chelsea almost the exact opposite of Saturday’s sloppy but exciting Blues in the 3-3 Southampton draw.
Having closely wathched the centre-back partnership between Zouma and Thiago Silva, Owen was full of praise for the Brazilian but scathing of his partner.
“Zouma next to him [Silva] fills you with a bit of fear,” Owen told BT Sport. “But as soon as you see the ball go into Silva you relax and that’s what the whole team will be feeling that.
“As soon as he in possession or is part of the team he spreads that confidence to everybody.”
On Silva, Lampard was similarly glowing in his praise for the veteran defender: “He was very good. I spoke about quality and experience before the game and he brought both of those and that affects others around him.”
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Fit-again Edouard Mendy kept a clean sheet, the Senegal stopper producing a tidy performance on the night Petr Cech was named in Chelsea’s Premier League squad.
On Mendy being number one now, Lampard added: “At the moment yes; he’s shown his quality. The way he’s played, he’s played very well, that’s two clean sheets for him already.
“As it stands he is (the number one) but that’s always up for grabs. But the way he’s playing I’m very happy. I was pleased with the professional element to the win.
“Seville are a top team in European football, no doubt. The concentration and focus to get the result was big from the team.
“We made a lot of good decisions tonight, so it’s a really nice place for us to build from. I think it’s a positive result. The clean sheet was a big deal for us.”