Picture Credit: Sky Sports
Kepa Arrizabalaga has received a fine ofone week’s wages by Chelsea, following his substitution snub in the Carabao Cupfinal at Wembley Stadium.
Will Arrizabalaga last at Chelsea?
Just as the penalty shootout was approaching (after 120 minutes and 0-0 on the scoreline) in last Sunday’s Carabao Cup final – contested by Chelsea and Man City – the Blues boss MaurizioSarri wanted to bring on Willy Caballero instead of Kepa Arrizabalaga.
The Argentine goalkeeper has a better penalty record compared to his Spanish teammate, which prompted Sarri to signal to the linesmen that a substitution is on their agenda, per football betting sites in UK. However, when Arrizabalaga’s number came up on the board here fused to come off and gestured to the Chelsea bench that he’s not complying with his manager’s decision.
Football pundits and other commentators heavily condemned the keeper’s decision to defy his boss’s instructions, as it undermined his authority which could have grave consequences to the team as a whole.
Arrizabalaga’s big gamble to be the hero didn’t pay off as he managed to save only 1 penalty in the shootout, which saw Man City clinch the Carabao Cup.
As a consequence of refusing to be substituted, Chelsea decided to punish the Spanish international with a week’s wages which amounts to a staggering £195,000 (€226,000).
Sarri claims the disputed has been resolved, after Kepa issues apology
“I wanted to take the time today to apologize fully and in person to the coach, to Willy, my team-mates and to the club,” said the young keeper. “I have done this and now I want to offer the same apology to the fans. I will learn from this episode and will accept any punishment or discipline the club decides is appropriate.”
Sarri himself stressed that the pair have resolved their differences and cleared up the ‘defiance’ that happened at Wembley on Sunday.
“Kepa and I have spoken about the incident.It was a good conversation,” commented the Italian. “There was a misunderstanding yesterday but he realizes he made a big mistake in the way he reacted. He has apologized to me, his team-mates and the club.”
“It’s up to the club if they want to discipline him according to the club rules, but for me this matter is now closed. The team performance as a whole was extremely positive and it is a shame to see how this incident has overshadowed our efforts in what was a very competitive cup final. Everyone’s focus is now on the next game and we must all not put this behind us.”
Following Thibaut Courtois’ move to RealMadrid last summer, Chelsea identified Arrizabalaga as their main target to replace the departing Belgian international that had just won the bronze medal at the 2018 World Cup and the tournament’s Golden Glove.
Arrizabalaga was forced to pay his own buyout clause (Chelsea transferred the money to his account) to finalize the move to the London side, as Athletic Bilbao wouldn’t accept a direct payment from the London club, according to football betting sites in Spain.
The Basque side is known to employ this tactic on their players that they don’t want to leave; it makes a potential transfer to another club somewhat more challenging to complete for a player,but it gets done in the end eventually. The switch to Stamford Bridge made Arrizabalaga the world’s most expensive goalkeeper, after completing the £71.6m (€80m) transfer.