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Chelsea trigger £71.6m release clause for young but very, very good goalkeeper.

It's confirmed at 09:22 this morning, Chelsea triggered the release clause in Kepa Arrizabalaga's contract with Athletic Bilbao a...


It's confirmed at 09:22 this morning, Chelsea triggered the release clause in Kepa Arrizabalaga's contract with Athletic Bilbao and the Spanish international is on his way to London according to Transfer Hound to sign becoming the world most expensive goalkeeper! The question remains - Who is he?

Hardly any of us would have been aware of him or known very little about him and for someone like that to be thrust into the limelight with the hefty price-tag you worry that he isn't going to live up to what the club have paid for him. 

Dominic Fifield from The Guardian posted an article here giving us more of an insight into Kepa and said:

Kepa, capped once but considered one of the most promising goalkeepers in Europe having impressed for his country through the junior age groups, has a release clause set at €80m (£71.6m). Bilbao are braced to lose the 23-year-old, who has travelled to Madrid with his agent before a 10am flight to London on Wednesday morning, having come close to selling the youngster to Real for only £17.9m in January.

The goalkeeper even passed a medical in the mid-season window only for the then Real manager, Zinedine Zidane, to dissuade the board from pursuing a deal as he was wary of disrupting the team’s rhythm by changing goalkeeper halfway through the campaign. Bilbao ended up tying him down to new terms, including that eye-catching buy-out clause, before finishing 16th with Kepa, who had joined the club at the age of 10, making 30 La Liga appearances en route.

First impressions are fair play to Bilbao for getting a new deal agreed with the massive release fee after the move to Madrid broke down. Also, if Real Madrid were looking at this guy at the age of 23 who had only just broke into their first team then there has to be some level of ability that we have to believe in. 

Maurizio Sarri also spoke of Kepa and said:

“I saw him one year ago [when I was] at Naples, and my first impression was he was a very good goalkeeper. Very young, but very, very good.” - The Guardian. 

I cannot help but think of the other options that are out there for significantly less money such as Jack Butland, Jordan Pickford and Joe Hart for god sake!. I cannot help but think that this is a knee-jerk reaction to Thibaut Courtois' stance with the club and a huge one at that. I accept that it's an investment with the hope that he will continue to develop into one of the best goalkeepers in the world. 

What are your opinions? Is this a massive gamble? 




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