Chelsea have been busy customers in the transfer window so far, most recently completing the signing of German sensation Kai Havertz from Bayer Leverkusen. However, now it seems Chelsea’s next point of call is between the sticks.
Chelsea had been linked with a number of goalkeepers to compete with Kepa Arrizabalaga, such as Nick Pope (Burnley) Mike Maignan (Lille). However, a deal is near to completion to sign Rennes goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.
Mendy isn’t a household name unless you’re avid watcher of Ligue 1, but he was dubbed by French journalists as ‘the best’ keeper in Ligue 1 last season. Mendy is a giant between the sticks, coming in with a height of 6ft6 making him an integral part of relieving the pressure from set pieces and crosses which is something Chelsea have lacked since the arrival of Kepa and the departure of Thibaut Courtois. Mendy only conceded 4 goals out of 19 from set pieces which is considerably lower than Kepa’s goals conceded from set pieces.
Mendy played 24 times in Ligue 1 last season for Rennes, the 28 year olds 0.8 goals conceded per 90 was the second lowest in the league, only to bettered by Predrag Rajkovic the man who replaced Mendy at Reims. Another important factor to showcase is that Mendy has kept a relatively healthy 9 cleans sheets in Ligue 1 last season. His post shot expected goals which means how likely a keeper is to save a shot is at + 1.7 which is way more superior to Kepa Arrizabalaga’s -9.6 which was the worst in the Premier League last season and lastly to conclude Mendy’s impressive statistics, he had a save percentage of 78% compared to Kepa’s 54%.
But the biggest outlook over Mendy and Kepa is that they both play in two completely different leagues. Kepa faced many more shots in the Premier League which we all know is far more competitive than Ligue 1. It’s a simple assumption to make of course, however time will tell if Mendy makes a good impact in the squad and his mere presence could by all means could fuel confidence into the Chelsea back four.
There is also a chance that Edouard Mendy could be an uncovered diamond; for instance Manchester City signed Ederson from Benfica, nobody knew who he was, and he’s now one of best goalkeepers in the Premier League. Mendy could be the bargain of the summer overall for the Blues, the rumoured price for him is around £20m.