Frank Lampard has opened up on Petr Cech’s influence in Chelsea’s pursuit of Rennes goalkeeper Edouard Mendy, as he looks to provide ‘competition’ to Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Chelsea have agreed a deal to sign the Senegal international as they seek competition for under-fire first-choice Kepa Arrizabalaga, the Spaniard coming under increased criticism for his performances of late, including a howler in the Blues’ 2-0 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday.
Ahead of tomorrow’s Carabao Cup clash with Barnsley, Lampard has confirmed that Mendy is undergoing a medical ahead of finalising a move to Stamford Bridge, the 28-year-old set to become the club’s seventh signing of a busy summer of recruitment.
“Mendy is having a medical as we speak,” Lampard said at his pre-match press conference. “Subject to that being okay, then he will be a Chelsea player.
Lampard also opened up on the influence of technical director Petr Cech in identifying Mendy as a potential target, the club’s legendary former goalkeeper having been impressed by the Senegalese’s performances in Ligue 1.
Cech also signed for Chelsea from Rennes before becoming one of the world’s very best goalkeepers, and Lampard is hopeful the former favourite has unearthed a gem as the club seek a player capable of challenging for the number one shirt.
Errors leading to goals in the 2020-21 Premier League:
◎ Kepa Arrizabalaga: 2
◎ All other players in the league combined: 1
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) September 20, 2020
“With Mendy coming in, it’s more competition so every reaction will have to be positive around that for Kepa and for Mendy to push to try and play in this team,” he explained.
“We know the standards that are required of a goalkeeper in this team and we have to push for that.
“Petr was important in that because goalkeeper is a very particular position and he was the best in the world at that position for a long time so he’s certainly had a big say in this situation from my point of view. I lean heavily on him when it comes to the goalkeepers day-to-day and planning for the future so he was very influential.”
Lampard also discussed the prospect of Mendy having to quarantine as per the government’s guidelines regarding travel from France, but says he believes the goalkeeper will be allowed to join his teammates should he pass coronavirus tests upon leaving Rennes and arriving in west London.
“As far as I’m aware, as long as he passes his tests before he travels, he will be tested with us on Thursday collectively as a team and if that is negative then he will be available to play.”