When Maurizio Sarri brought in Kepa Arrizabalaga to Stamford Bridge from Valencia CF in 2018, it was one of the major news in the entire transfer window. The Spanish international became the most expensive goalkeeper in world football.
After the departure of Thibaut Courtois, Chelsea needed a goalkeeper who could fill in the void of missing a world-class keeper who had won two league titles with the squad. And Kepa Arrizabalaga’s name wasn’t that well known at that stage.
Hence it was justifiable that a lot of fans weren’t totally satisfied with the buy. However, when you place so much trust in a keeper that you give 72 million pounds for him- it definitely makes a big statement.
To Kepa Arrizabalaga’s credit, he did start well to life at Chelsea with some good performances in the 2018/19 season most notably the two saves against Southampton when Townsend rattled him with two thunderous strikes.
Arrizabalaga was also the mainstay in helping Chelsea reaching the UEFA Europa League final in that season. His big contribution came in the semi-final game against Eintracht Frankfurt wherein he made two penalty saves in the shoot-out.
But a slight view was given inside the arrogant and stubborn nature of Kepa when he had the famous fight with Maurizio Sarri. Refusing to come off against Manchester City in the Carabao Cup which many may argue cost Chelsea the match.
Frank Lampard drops major hint about Kepa Arrizabalaga
Since 2019/20 Kepa Arrizabalaga has been absolutely dismal for the club. His save percentage is very poor and is currently on the sidelines after Frank Lampard lost complete faith in him. Eduoard Mendy has been bought from Rennes.
He hasn’t featured in the Premier League since October and has lost the number one spot to Eduoard Mendy. His last appearance for Chelsea came in the UEFA Champions League against Krasnodar.
Eduoard Mendy has undoubtedly been very impressive ever since his arrival and has given Kepa Arrizabalaga no chance at redemption. Now manager Frank Lampard has let into what holds for Kepa Arrizabalaga in the future.
“Well at the moment he’s our player and I think the situation is clear, Edou’s (Edouard Mendy) come in, he’s been playing regularly as the number one for us.When Kepa came in for the Champions League game he did well, and he’s trained really well. His attitude around the place has been brilliant.So I won’t be drawn on that one at the moment, he’s our player, we’ll see how January goes. But I don’t want to be alluding to what might or might not be.”
Frank Lampard praised Kepa Arrizabalaga for his professionalism. He may be handing out Kepa a rare start against Morecambe in the FA Cup third-round match. It will be his first start since early December.
There have been rumors that the blues are ready to bid adieu to Kepa Arrizabalaga bit finding a buyer will be tough with still five years left in the contract. Reports have arisen that he may be going back to his homeland Spain but whether it will be a loan transfer or a permanent buy is still unknown.