Chelsea´s goal has been a matter of concern for ‘The Blues’ since 2018. That year, Thibaut Courtois signed for Real Madrid and Kepa Arrizabalaga moved to London in order to become a starter keeper. However, two years later, the Spanish has not shown secureness on his role. In fact, he does not have Frank Lampard´s confidence anymore: last season Willy Caballero played the last four matches of the year (after Chelsea´s defeat to Liverpool by 5-3, where Kepa was the starter) among the FA Cup semifinals and final.
[…] “The problem is that they don´t shoot to us too much, but we concede too many goals when we do. We were aware of this by the time of signing new players”
Frank Lampard at the press conference on October 19th before their meet against Sevilla.
The statement by Chelsea´s coach were clearly pointing out to Kepa. In fact, in the previous match, Chelsea lost 3-0 to Southhampton with him in the goal. On the other hand, the club signed Édouard Mendy from Rennes on the transfer market in order to fight for the spot with Kepa and Caballero, according to the press note from the purchase. He made his debut against Tottenham at the Carabao Cup and he made two astonishing saves that allowed the Blues to get to the penalty shots, but they ended up being defeated.
Mendy got a clean sheet the next six games. This way, he equalized Petr Čech´s record that he made during the first seven matches from the 2004 season. The explayer from Rennes has shined on his actions and, actually, he was the saver of the team at the meet against Manchester United. Among his strengths are his dominance on the air inside the box, just the opposite to Kepa. Lampard himself has praised the aptitudes from his new keeper: “He has provided us with a lot calm through his playing skills with the feet and t the gol line. He does everything you expect from a goalie”. The English coach has pointed out that he still thinks that he has to improve and he can make huge progress through his attitude.
His excellent performances have displaced the most expensive keeper in the world and the second with the highest salary in the Premier league to the bench. The exgoalie from Athletic Club has now a very high level competitor for the spot, but his teammate said on an interview to Chelsea that they have a good relationship: “Kepa wished me luck before my first game. As keeper, we know that we have to stay together. We are all willing to help each other”, stated Mendy. He also added that he is focused on developing as a player and helping the team.
This way, The Blues´gol seems to be in the right hands. Édouard Mendy´s impact in this first matches has been positive and he promises to be a top keeper in the long term. It is just a matter of time to confirm his high level.