Thursday, August 18, 2022

In the midst of transfer rumors, Kepa Arrizabalaga discusses his future with Chelsea

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In the midst of transfer rumors, Kepa Arrizabalaga discusses his future with Chelsea

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Whether it’s at Chelsea or somewhere else, Kepa Arrizabalaga says he is keen to “play more” next season.

In the midst of transfer rumors, Kepa Arrizabalaga discusses his future with Chelsea

In 2018, the Spain international replaced Thibaut Courtois as the team’s starting goalkeeper. He was signed by Chelsea for a record-breaking sum of £71 million at the start of Maurizio Sarri’s lone season in charge.

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To replace Arrizabalaga after his first two seasons were marred by blunders, Frank Lampard bought Édouard Mendy from Stade Rennais in Ligue 1 in 2022. Since that time, Mendy has started under Lampard and, most recently, Thomas Tuchel, leaving Arrizabalaga on the sidelines.

The 27-year-old has been employed by Tuchel as a stand-in shootout goalie, taking Mendy’s place in both the Carabao Cup final last season and the UEFA Super Cup final against Villarreal. He was successful in the former but failed to make the key penalty kick in the latter.

The former Athletic Bilbao player’s current top priority is to play regular football.

Kepa said, “Obviously, I want to play more.” It is true that he favors another player (Mendy), and that is something I attempt to modify in my day-to-day activities. I train and prepare for playing because I want to do it.

Arrizabalaga believes he is not ‘desperate’ to leave Chelsea and that his ideal situation would be to reclaim the starting position there, but if that is not feasible, he will consider moving on to another team.

I currently play for Chelsea, but it’s obvious to me that I want to play more. In the past year or so, when I have played, I’ve put up strong performances.

The feeling is that I desire more as a result of my successful performances. I’m itching to play more. I want to be successful at Chelsea. My explicit goal is to play, so if I can’t, we’ll look at alternative options.

I’m not in a hurry. I’m in a sizable club at the end of the day. I’ll speak with the coach, and we’ll make a decision together, but I’ll make it very clear that I want to play more.

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