'Very advanced': £71m Chelsea player set to leave the club before the end of the week – journalist

Journalist Simon Phillips has told GiveMeSport that he expects Kepa Arrizabalaga to complete his move away from Stamford Bridge in the coming days.

The Spaniard joined the club for the huge fee of £71m, and was looking set to prove his worth following a promising first season at the club.

However, his confidence and performances have fallen off a cliff in the subsequent years, with him being dropped for Willy Caballero for big games during Project Restart.

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Since then, he has been a long way off the club’s starting team, following the signing of Edouard Mendy two years ago.

The Senegal international has enjoyed a meteoric rise to being one of the best goalkeepers in the world, leaving Kepa fighting for scrap minutes in cup competitions.

This has seemingly sealed his fate for the future, with Phillips claiming Napoli are ready to take him off the club’s hands in the next few days.

Kepa set to leave Chelsea

He said: “I haven’t heard any names of replacements, which is weird because Chelsea are very advanced with Napoli over those negotiations, and I think that will be done in the next two or three days; a loan move with an obligation to buy.”

The Blues have already been in the market to solve their goalkeeper conundrum for the future, with them signing highly-rated youngster Gabriel Slonina from Chicago Fire.

However, he is set to return to the MLS outfit to finish their season, not returning to the club until January.

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Despite Mendy likely to be unrivalled for the number one jersey, it is unclear who will become his deputy for at least the first half of the season, with Marcus Bettinelli the only other first team option at this stage.

A move seems perfect for Kepa, with him still having a chance to revive his career at international level as well as for clubs.

Jack is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has freelanced for The Athletic and The Sun. Jack has reported live from Premier League and Championship grounds, whilst also being published in the Non League Paper.