Everton beat the summer transfer window deadline to capture France international centre-back Kurt Zouma on a season-long loan from Chelsea.
Capped twice by Les Bleus at the time of his Goodison arrival, Lyon-born Zouma began his career at Vaulx-en-Velin, initially playing as a right winger and striker before converting to his current defensive position.
He joined French top-flight side Saint-Étienne in 2009, penning his first professional deal in April 2011. Soon after, Zouma was promoted to the senior squad by then manager Christophe Galtier, going on to make his first-team bow aged just 16 in an August 2011 Coupe de la Ligue clash against Bordeaux.
Indeed, so young was Zouma that he initially played in a shirt without a name as Galtier tried to shield him from media scrutiny.
His Ligue 1 debut followed a month later against Lorient, before he registered his maiden goal in the November of that season during a 2-0 win over Nice.
Premier League side Chelsea captured his signature on a five-and-a-half-year deal in January 2014, with Zouma remaining at Saint-Étienne for the rest of the 2013-14 campaign.
Linking up with the Londoners prior to the following season, Zouma was handed the number five shirt and scored the opening goal on his debut - a 2-1 League Cup win over Bolton Wanderers in September 2014.
His second Chelsea start was a Champions League tie against Slovenian side Maribor, before the youngster got his first introduction to the Premier League against Manchester United at Old Trafford a month later.
Impressing as a defensive midfielder, Zouma helped Chelsea lift the League Cup in 2015 as Jose Mourinho’s men defeated Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley.
However, a serious knee injury sustained in February 2016 curtailed his progress and left him sidelined for six months.
Having made his comeback in an FA Cup tie against Peterborough United in January 2017, Zouma was allowed to move on a season-long loan to Stoke City that summer, signing a new six-year deal at Stamford Bridge before making the switch to the bet365 Stadium.
He made 37 appearances for the Potters after making his debut in the 1-0 loss to Everton in August 2017.
Having represented his country at every level from Under-16s, Zouma lifted the Under-20s World Cup alongside now Everton teammate Lucas Digne in 2013 and captained his nation when stepping up to the Under-21s.
In March 2015, Didier Deschamps called him up to the senior squad for the first time for friendlies against Brazil and Denmark, with Zouma making his international debut against the latter at the home of his former club Saint-Étienne, replacing Morgan Schneiderlin in the second half.
Contracted to: Season-long loan (2018-19)