One Chelsea player has given an insight into the frustration he regularly has watching on from the sidelines, but he remains determined to work hard every single day on the training round.
Chelsea’s Kepa Arrizabalaga has been discussing his role as the number two goalkeeper at Stamford Bridge.
Unfortunately, the 27-year-old finds himself stuck behind brilliant teammate Edouard Mendy in the goalkeeper pecking order.
Kepa’s made just four appearances across all competitions so far this season, which includes winning three different penalty shootouts in various cup games.
The £150,000-a-week Spanish shot-stopper has looked somewhere back to his best since Thomas Tuchel took charge as manager back in January. However, he’s behind one of the world’s best right now in Mendy.
Kepa explains that he obviously wants Tuchel to pick him more in the starting line-up, and that he has to be mentally tough when he doesn’t play.
“It’s not easy when you’re not playing, everybody wants to play, but the best way I’m trying to do it is push every day hard. Just push yourself every day in the training and be positive. I know sometimes it is not easy, but you have to be very strong mentally,” Kepa said.
“When I have the opportunity, like in the cups, or like I did in the league against Tottenham, when I come in I do my best to take the opportunity and give everything to make the manager have a hard decision.”
Kepa unsung hero at Chelsea in 2021
It’s been a much better calendar year for Kepa in a Chelsea shirt than previous ones.
He’s been a reliable figure when called upon by Tuchel, which is a relief for any manager knowing they’ve got someone in reserve that can jump in when needed in net.
Mendy has rightly been getting all the praise for his outstanding performances in goal. However, he’s being pushed every day behind the scenes by the entire goalkeeper department.
Kepa has done a great accepting his role within the Blues squad.
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