Why Chelsea must repeat Liverpool and Man City transfer trick amid Edouard Mendy decision
Chelsea must continue to invest in Graham Potter’s squad in the January transfer window if they are to move up the Premier League table. The Blues went into the World Cup break in eighth and will need to drastically improve if they are to finish inside the top four. Chelsea sacked Thomas Tuchel back in September and replaced the German with former Brighton boss Graham Potter.
Following Potter’s arrival, he opted to make a change in goal by bringing in Kepa Arrizabalaga to start ahead of Edouard Mendy. The 30-year-old keeper has struggled to replicate his form that saw him help the Blues win the Champions League under Tuchel. Injuries have hampered Mendy’s chances under Potter but he has only started two Premier League matches for the Blues since the change in the dugout, and that was only because Kepa was injured.
Mendy’s poor form has continued into the World Cup after he was at fault for both of the Netherlands goals in Senegal’s opening World Cup Group A match. The Chelsea keeper has been linked with a move to London rivals Tottenham and Juventus ahead of January as the Blues continue to weigh up moving on the 30-year-old who has three years left on his current deal.
Kepa remains the most expensive goalkeeper transfer in history and has shown signs of promise under Potter, but he remains a liability at times. Liverpool and Manchester City have shown that a world-class goalkeeper is vital when challenging for the top honours domestically and in Europe. Ederson and Alisson are considered amongst the best goalkeepers in the world with both competing to start for Brazil at the World Cup.
A stable defence offers a strong platform for any team to go and attack, with City and Liverpool proving that by having a good defensive record, it can lead to challenging at the top of the Premier League and latter stages of domestic and European cup competitions on a consistent basis.
Potter may prefer Kepa to Mendy, but neither goalkeeper can be considered at the same level as Ederson and Alisson. Chelsea must find a solution to this by going out and signing a world- class goalkeeper of their own that can settle the defence and solve a key problem for Potter.
Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak has been linked with a move to the Premier League in the past, and the Slovenia international is one of the top keepers in Spain. The Blues may now be regretting letting go of Thibaut Courtois in 2018 after the Belgian proved to be a key player as Real Madrid beat Liverpool in last season’s Champions League final before winning the Yashin trophy at this year’s Ballon d’Or awards ceremony.