'To be honest': Paul Merson admits he's been left in complete shock by 28-year-old Chelsea player recently

Paul Merson has explained he’s been shocked by the recent performances of Chelsea’s Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Kepa, who has started all six games since Graham Potter took charge as the new Chelsea boss, is enjoying a great run in the side.

The 28-year-old goalkeeper has endured some really tough spells at Stamford Bridge, which includes sat on the bench for large periods as the understudy to Edouard Mendy.

However, he’s currently thriving as the number one option for Potter.

Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Merson shocked by Kepa

Merson has admitted his major surprise at the U-turn performed by Kepa.

“Kepa had one of the best goalkeeping performances I’ve ever seen [against Aston Villa]. I didn’t think he had it in him, to be honest. After the amount of stick he’s got, I’m really pleased for him,” Merson said.

Kepa has now gone four consecutive games without conceding.

The Spanish shot-stopper delivered a spectacular performance on the weekend to keep another clean sheet in the 2-0 Premier League win away to Aston Villa. In fact, even opposition player Danny Ings called him “magnificent” after his display.

Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images

Late WC dart?

If Kepa continues like this, is there time for him to sneak into the Spain World Cup squad?

The gloveman has earned 11 senior caps for his country in the past, but hasn’t been involved in a Spain squad since November in 2020.

His focus right now will be on trying to cement his Chelsea starting role ahead of tough competition, but what a boost it would be if he’s given a late call-up to the World Cup.

In fairness, international managers should always want in-form players to rely on during tournaments. Kepa is showing in recent weeks he’s as confident as any keep in-between the sticks.

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Dom is a Chelsea supporter who has worked in online publishing for more than six years. Graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016, he now writes exclusively for The Chelsea Chronicle covering news, analysis and match coverage. He enjoys the dream position of writing about his boyhood club, which seems to be involved in more drama every single day than an episode of The Bill. Aside from his love for Chelsea, he supports and follows the England cricket team. He also fancies himself as the Sunday League version of Michael Essien.