- Both Liverpool and Chelsea were looking for new goalkeepers in 2018, with Chelsea keen on Alisson at first
- Chelsea refused to pay AS Roma's asking fee for Alisson and Liverpool moved in for him instead
- Alisson is enjoying a glittering time at Liverpool, while Kepa is the second choice to Edouard Mendy
Chelsea refused to pay the asking fee of 66.8 million euros to sign Alisson Becker in 2018. Details have emerged of how The Blues were reluctant to part with such a huge amount of money, only to spend more on Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Kepa’s time in England has come under intense scrutiny, with the goalkeeper failing to live up to his hefty price tag. He is currently the most expensive goalkeeper after Chelsea forked out 71.6 million euros.
He is the third-most-expensive Chelsea transfer after Romelu Lukaku and Kai Havertz.
Both Liverpool and Chelsea were in the hunt for new goalkeepers due to contrasting reasons. Loris Karius magnanimous blunders in the 2018 Champions League final made Jurgen Klopp ditch him as his preferred goalkeeper. Chelsea, meanwhile, had lost Belgian Thibaut Courtois to Real Madrid.
The Sun reports that Chelsea were the first to approach AS Roma over a possible deal for Alisson. Roma maintained their hard stance and Chelsea backed out of the deal. The Reds swooped in and paid the asking price to bring the Brazilian to England.
Days later, Chelsea bought Kepa from Athletico Bilbao, and the two goalkeepers have gone on to have contrasting fortunes. Alisson has since won the Champions League and the Premier League. Liverpool are also fighting to win a historic quadruple this season.
Edouard Mendy took his spot
While Kepa’s trophy haul at Chelsea has similarly been impressive, he has fallen down the pecking order. The outgoing Champions League champions brought in Edouard Mendy from Rennes last season. The Senegalese shot-stopper has since established himself as the number choice at Stamford Bridge.
Many will remember Kepa’s altercation with Maurizio Sarri in 2019 during the Carabao cup final. There was some misunderstanding as the Spaniard refused to leave the field of play despite his then manager wanting him to do so.
Despite his blunders, the 27-year-old has helped Chelsea win trophies in recent times. He was the penalty shootout hero in the UEFA Super Cup as Chelsea beat Villareal.
Kepa's missed penalty against Liverpool
Kepa issued a strong message after this season's Carabao Cup final. He was also on the receiving end when he missed the final spot-kick. Sports Brief reported that Thomas Tuchel brought him on for the penalties after a stalemate in normal and extra time. Kepa, however, failed to save any of Liverpool’s penalties and ended up skying his to gift Liverpool the trophy.