Things have not exactly gone to plan for the world's most expensive goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga this season at Chelsea.


As a result of his calamitous mistakes, he was dropped to the bench for the Blues' recent clash with Leicester City, with veteran shot-stopper Willy Caballero taking his place. 

Kepa Arrizabalaga

Manager Frank Lampard had originally ​wanted to drop the Spaniard earlier in the season, but was reluctant to do so because, well, he's the most expensive keeper in the world. However, he couldn't wait any longer and he ​could soon clash with the club's officials over his desire to sell Kepa. 


As a result of his poor form, the west London side are said to have made Lille goalkeeper Mike Maignan ​their 'priority' signing for the upcoming summer transfer window.


So with this in mind, we have decided to take you through five things you should know about the Chelsea target...


Came Through the Ranks at PSG

Mike Maignan

In 2012, a young Maignan was promoted from Paris Saint-Germain's Under-19 team to the B team, where he went on to play for them until he was promoted to the first team in 2013.


The Paris-based side had high hopes for the youngster, who signed his first professional contract with the club in June 2013. In December that year, he was included in a matchday squad for the very first time, and was then included in a Ligue 1 game for the first time one month later. 


The player recently opened up on an incident during his time training with the first team, where, of course, Zlatan Ibrahimovic was involved. When the big Swede accused him of being a useless keeper, Maignan saved his next attempt at goal before standing up to him. It took character and despite his young age, he didn't shy away. In the end, he admitted that he came away with even more respect for Ibrahimovic.


He told ​France Football: "He was practising shooting and the ball was going past me at 400km an hour! He told me: 'You're a s*** goalkeeper.' For me, that wasn't right. The next time, he came back but I stopped his shot. I had to respond: 'You're a s*** attacker.' He just looked at me and didn't say anything.


"Back in the changing room, he [Ibrahimovic] stopped me. He told me that it's good, that he liked what I did and that he liked my personality. I loved him before but it made me like him even more."


Despite his best efforts, Maignan failed to make a first team appearance for PSG and was eventually sold in 2015 to Lille for just €1m. With the 24-year-old continuing to shine this season, it appears as though it was a case of 'one that got away' for PSG.


Voted Best Keeper in France (2018/19)

Maignan was excellent during the 2018/19 campaign, helping his side finish second in Ligue 1, meaning they were rewarded with Champions League football for the 2019/20 season. 


And as a result of his fine form last term, he was voted the best goalkeeper in Ligue 1 by the National Union of Professional Footballers.


The shot-stopper played in all 38 of Lille's league games last season, managing to keep 15 clean sheets during this time - the second-highest tally in Ligue 1. Moreover, with his side battling Lyon for second place, Maignan kept a stunning nine clean sheets in his final 16 league games to help them finish above their French rivals. 


This run saw him make a number of high-profile saves to keep his team in games or to help them see out a win. The keeper has shown time and time again already that when his team needs him to step up, he does. 


The goalkeeper has extremely impressive reflexes, allowing him to make a number of these world class saves. And while he may only be one centimetre taller than Kepa, he is a very dominant presence inside his own box, taking control of situations. 


Not only that, as is crucial for the modern day footballer, he has the ability to put the ball down on the floor and can comfortably play out from the back, either playing a simple pass out or pinging a long ball up to his striker. He is certainly a well-rounded keeper. 


He's a Liverpool Fan

Jurgen Klopp

While Chelsea may be looking to bring him in, Maignan is actually a fan of another ​Premier League side. 


The Frenchman ​recently admitted that he has been a major fan of runaway league leaders Liverpool ever since he was a young boy. He said: “I have been a big fan of ​Liverpool since I was little...I like Steven Gerrard a lot, I used to love his style… Why not! [one day move to Liverpool].”


Perhaps the prospect of moving to England and playing in the Premier League would be enticing for the Reds fan, but what is clear, however, is that Chelsea are seemingly not put off by his recent comments as they continue their search for a potential new number one. 


Attracted Interest From Manchester United (& Others)

Mike Maignan

Well, no surprise here. 


Maignan as previously mentioned is a Liverpool fan, but he has previously been linked with a move to ​Manchester United because...that's just what happens, isn't it?


Duncan Castles of ​the Daily Record reported during the summer that due to David de Gea's contract situation at United, the club were interested in signing Maignan as a potential replacement. They also held an interest Ajax's Andre Onana, but Lille's shot-stopper was identified as a potentially cheaper option.


The French side were initially asking for €25m for his services, but they soon increased their valuation to €35m. 


Maignan has been tipped for a very bright future and it is no surprise that the report also claims that Paris Saint-Germain wanted to re-sign him, while Ajax were also keen on the player. However, the French side now face another battle to keep hold of their star man, with ​Chelsea making him their number one priority signing to replace Kepa. It remains to be seen, however, whether or not Lille will look raise their valuation. 


Still Awaiting Senior Debut for France

Mike Maignan

The 24-year-old is very highly regarded in France and has been tipped to become Hugo Lloris' long-term successor for the national side. There is also some surprise that he hasn't been given his chance as of yet. 


Maignan is still yet to make his senior debut, although he was called up for the European Championship qualifiers against Turkey and Andorra and a friendly against Bolivia in May. 


However, the man between the sticks began playing for France at Under-16 level and has worked his way up. And it appears only a matter of time before he gets his opportunity for Didier Deschamps side, with his excellent performances continuing to attract attention.