Chelsea transfer news: Stephen Warnock says Frank Lampard must replace Kepa Arrizabalaga (Image: GETTY)
Chelsea may continue with Kepa Arrizabalaga as their first-choice goalkeeper at the start of this season.
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard must replace Kepa Arrizabalaga and not just sign a goalkeeper as competition, according to former Liverpool left-back Stephen Warnock. Chelsea are heavily linked with an £18million move for Rennes goalkeeper Edouard Mendy. But transfer expert Ian McGarry claims Lampard’s plan is to bring Mendy in to try and get the best out of Arrizabalaga.
Arrizabalaga was dropped twice from Chelsea’s Premier League side last season.
The Spaniard, who remains the most expensive goalkeeper of all time, has received heavy criticism for his performances for the Blues.
The goalkeeper position is the area Warnock still believes is a cause for concern for Lampard.
And the pundit thinks Arrizabalaga has proven he is not up to the task.
“My biggest concern with Chelsea is still the goalkeeping area,” Warnock told Sky Sports News.
“I just think you have to strengthen the goalkeeping area. Kepa’s not up to it.
“I think he’s weak when he comes for crosses, his organisation skills don’t look up to much.
“Yes an experienced player like Thiago Silva coming in could be great for that but they definitely need to strengthen that area.”
Meanwhile, McGarry claimed on the Transfer Window podcast that Lampard was not bringing in Mendy to be an immediate first-choice at Stamford Bridge.
“The idea is that Mendy will not necessarily replace Kepa as the first-choice goalkeeper at Stamford Bridge but instead will provide a high level of competition to the Spain goalkeeper and indeed hopefully re-kickstart his Chelsea career,” McGarry said.
“We reported in May that [Petr] Cech believed that Kepa still had a future at Chelsea and that indeed there were some off-field problems which, if resolved, could see him better himself in terms of his attitude and concentration and ability to perform at the highest level again.
“Recruiting Mendy is seen as a way of hopefully, in Chelsea’s case and in Frank Lampard’s case, of getting Kepa back to the keeper that they paid £71m for from Athletic Bilbao.”
Mendy would be Chelsea’s seventh signing of the summer and would take the Blues’ to around £220m.
Lampard’s side begin their Premier League campaign on Monday with a trip to Brighton.
New signings Hakim Ziyech and Ben Chilwell have been ruled out of the match, with Thiago Silva also a huge doubt.