Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has opened up on the club's decision to sell Kurt Zouma to West Ham United ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash.
The French international departed late on in the summer transfer window, with Trevoh Chalobah trusted to fill in his absence.
Speaking to Chelsea's official club website, Tuchel opened up on why he took a risk and let Zouma depart.
He said: "He is a strong, experienced Premier League player and he suffered from the decision for (Cesar) Azpilicueta in the back three, for Andreas (Christensen) and for Toni (Rudiger) in the back three as direct competitors to his place so he had not enough minutes for his status and quality and for where he wants to be in this time of his career.
"He had a huge influence, and he was very well respected. And very late, this offer came from West Ham and very late he decided and gave me that call and we had the talks. This is an offer that may be the perfect fit for me."
The Chelsea boss continued to label Zouma's departure as a 'risk' as the Blues did not bring in another central defender during the transfer window, instead handing a chance to Trevoh Chalobah.
Tuchel continued: "We had to make a decision and we respected the wish because he was long time a player here and we took a bit of a risk to fully trust Trevoh which we did not know in this moment if he can reach the consistent level."
Chelsea face Zouma and West Ham on Saturday in the 12:30 kick-off.
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