Ex Nigerian international Carl Ikeme has stated that it was extremely wrong for Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga to have refused to be substituted by his coach Maurizio Sarri after his number was up for substitution in the Carabao Cup final loss to Manchester City on Sunday.
The former Wolverhampton Wanderers goalkeeper who retired from the sport after been diagnosed with acute leukaemia in early 2018 stated that although it is always difficult to accept some substitutions after one has played his heart out on the pitch, the best thing to do is accept the coach’s decision then deal with the issue later instead of creating a scene.
With the goalkeeper failing to leave the pitch, Chelsea went on to lose the game and reacting to the issue Ikeme said it was a lose-lose situation for the shot-stopper; “Unless it was planned. Which it clearly wasn’t any keeper would be pissed off! But he should have come off and settled it after the game. I felt for him as the board went up and it’s bad for Chelsea that he didn’t go lose-lose situation now.”
After the game, the Chelsea goalkeeper in a statement noted that the issue had been blown out of proportion as his intention was not to disobey the instruction from the head coach; “I think everything has been misunderstood in the heat of the final part of a match for the title. I feel the image that has been portrayed was not my intention. I have full respect for the coach and his authority.”
Also reacting to the situation, head coach of the team Maurizio Sarri noted that it was a huge misunderstanding because he thought the player had cramp after he had been treated twice by the medical team. However, he says Kepa was right that he could continue although the way he went about it was wrong. Sarri says he needs to talk to Kepa now.
Manchester City beat Chelsea 4 – 3 on penalties with Brazilian duo of Jorginho and David Luiz losing their spot kicks for the Blues.