Mauricio Pochettino confirms Chelsea star 'has permission' to leave club this summer


Mauricio Pochettino confirms Chelsea star 'has permission' to leave club this summer

Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino has confirmed that goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga has been given permission to leave the club this summer.

The Spanish goalkeeper was expected to be the Blues' number one goalkeeper this season despite the arrival of Robert Sanchez from Brighton.

Kepa played 29 Premier League games for Chelsea last season, retaining his place in the team despite working under four managers during the campaign.

But interest began to grow in the goalkeeper in the past week, with one of his managers from last season - Thomas Tuchel - keen to bring him to Bayern Munich.

According to Sky Sports Germany, the Bundesliga champions made Kepa their 'number one target' following an injury to Yann Sommer.

But on Thursday, it was confirmed that Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois had torn his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), and would miss the entire season.

Real initially considered signing free agent David de Gea to replace the Belgian, but reports from Spanish outlet Cadena COPE claimed that manager Carlo Ancelotti was not in favour of the move.

BBC Sport claimed on Saturday that Los Blancos were closing in on a loan move for Kepa instead - and Pochettino has spoken out about the move.

Chelsea boss Pochettino gives Kepa update

Speaking ahead of his side's Premier League fixture against Liverpool on Sunday, Pochettino was questioned about why he had not named Kepa in the squad for the match.

Instead of the former Athletic Bilbao star, his fellow Spanish international goalkeeper Robert Sanchez started between the sticks.

Pochettino explained (quotes via Daily Mail): "With Kepa it is something that has happened very quick, and it is a situation that is correct [reports of move].

"He has permission to explore a different situation and we will see what happens with that one over the next 24 or 48 hours."

Kepa signed for Chelsea from Bilbao in 2018, with the Blues paying a world-record transfer fee for a goalkeeper of £71.6 million.

He has mixed success at Stamford Bridge since his arrival, but established himself as a key player in a struggling side last term.

That meant his role as the side's number one goalkeeper was secure - but he now looks likely to embark on a new adventure at the Bernabeu should the move go through.
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