New Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy will not pressurise Kepa Arrizabalaga because he isn’t a household name, according to John Barnes.
Mendy was finally unveiled as the Blues’ seventh signing of the summer on Thursday morning, putting pen to paper on a five-year deal at Stamford Bridge.
Frank Lampard was keen to add another goalkeeper to his ranks amid concerns over current No.1 Arrizabalaga, who made costly errors in this month’s opening Premier League fixtures against Brighton and Liverpool.
The Spaniard, who recorded the second-lowest save percentage in the division last term, faces a fight to keep his starting place in between the sticks.
Yet Barnes believes Mendy’s arrival will not impact too heavily on Arrizabalaga, insisting the latter remains first choice in west London.
“With the new goalkeeper [Mendy] expected to join Chelsea this week, this won’t put too much pressure on Kepa for the number one spot,” the Liverpool and England legend told BonusCodeBets before Mendy sealed his switch to Chelsea.
“Edouard Mendy isn’t exactly a household name that a lot of people know about so he will immediately be under pressure if they put him straight in.
“If Chelsea were to sign Jan Oblak or Manuel Neuer, they can put him in straightaway and if he makes a mistake, fans would let it slide as they know he is a top goalkeeper.
“However, if they put this new goalkeeper in at the start and he makes a mistake, fans will be asking for Kepa to be brought back in.
“Chelsea signing Edouard Mendy will not install confidence in the fans as they know that he won’t be directly replacing Kepa.
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“With the amount of money that Chelsea paid for Kepa Arrizabalaga, fans should know that they spent that amount because of how good he was, so people need to remember that.”
Mendy may only have to wait a few days to make his Chelsea debut, with Lampard’s side set to go away to West Brom in the Premier League on Saturday.
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