Kepa Arrizabalaga Keen to Stay & Fight for Chelsea Place

Aug 31, 2020, 9:45 AM GMT+1
Kepa Arrizabalaga
Kepa Arrizabalaga could yet stay at Chelsea | Clive Rose/Getty Images
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Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga has done a U-turn and now believes that staying at Stamford Bridge to fight for the number one shirt would be best for his career.

The Spaniard endured a tumultuous season which saw him dropped from Frank Lampard's starting lineup twice, including for the FA Cup final and the decisive league meeting with Wolverhampton Wanderers on the final day of the Premier League season.

Kepa Arrizabalaga
Arrizabalaga was dropped for Chelsea's final few games | Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images

That prompted rumours that Arrizabalaga could be offloaded this summer and it was initially believed that the goalkeeper was eager to call time on his spell in London, with a return to Spain with either Valencia or Sevilla seen as potential options.

However, The Sun now state that Arrizabalaga wants to get his head down and prove himself at Chelsea, and he feels capable of doing so after seeing Lampard reinforce the Blues' leaky defence this summer.

Chelsea have added veteran centre-back Thiago Silva from Paris Saint-Germain and splashed out close to £50m on left-back Ben Chilwell from Leicester City, and there's even talk that West Ham United's Declan Rice could still follow.

That has helped Arrizabalaga believe that things will be different this season, and he is now keen to force his way back into Lampard's plans.

What this means for Chelsea's pursuit of a new goalkeeper this summer is unclear. It has long been suggested that the boss would look to sign someone new even if Arrizabalaga does stay, but his transfer budget now may not stretch to one of the luxury signings like Atlético Madrid's Jan Oblak.

This will likely not stop the transfer rumours from swirling, with most fans and even Lampard himself thought to believe that Kep2a's time at the club is up, but technical director Petr Čech has recently moved to pour cold water on the idea of selling the goalkeeper.

Petr Cech
Cech has defenced Arrizabalaga | James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

"Kepa struggled last season, that is unquestionable," Čech told Sport.cz. "But the club invested in him and gave him a long-term contract because they believe he has the qualities and attributes to be successful.

"Additions will be made to the squad, perhaps even in goal, and this is what is being discussed now. But nobody is giving up on Kepa and we all hope he has a great future."

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