Kepa Arrizabalaga has said the furore about his apparent refusal to be subbed off by Maurizio Sarri in the League Cup final was just a big misunderstanding.
The Chelsea goalkeeper was in the process of being substituted off for Willy Caballero in the dying minutes of extra-time after seemingly complaining about cramp, but refused to come off, causing his manager to lose his cool on the touchline.
Arrizabalaga would go on to save one spot-kick in the shootout, that of Leroy Sane, but the Blues ultimately lost out to Manchester City 4-3 on penalties following a 0-0 draw after extra-time at Wembley.
The fallout has thus far been surprisingly amicable, with Sarri calling the whole incident ‘a misunderstanding,’ while the keeper has followed that line of explanation in a statement made via Twitter:
“First of all I regret how the end of the match has been portrayed. At no time has it been my intention to disobey the coach or any of his decisions,” said the Chelsea number one.
“I think everything has been misunderstood in the heat of a final part of a match for a title.
“The coach thought I was not in a position to play on and my intention was to express that I was in good condition to continue helping the team, while the [Chelsea doctors] that had treated me arrived at the bench to deliver the message.
“I feel the image that has been portrayed was not my intention.
“I have full respect for the coach and his authority.”