21/12/2021; 3:13 PM By : Steven D. Thompson
The pair had a philosophical falling out after the manager tried to substitute him in the Carabao Cup final in 2019.
Maurizio Sarri had a torrid time at Chelsea despite winning the Europa League and finishing runner-up in the EFL Cup. The Italian manager had a one year stint at the London club.
While at Chelsea, it never felt like he was in control, and it was no surprise to see him go after just a season in charge. Sarri, who is back in his native Italy, is keen to turn the fortunes of Lazio around.
Sarri is looking to bolster the goalkeeper department at Lazio, and he has his eyes on a player that caused him a little grief back at Chelsea. Sarri wants to be reunited with Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Reports making the rounds suggest that former Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri wants a reunion with his former goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga. It comes as news due to the history between the pair.
When Sarri was the manager at Chelsea, Kepa Arrizabalaga was his number one goalkeeper. The relationship, which was for a year, left a sour taste in the mouths of many Chelsea fans. During Sarri's stay at Chelsea, the major highlight was not the Europa League that the club won but the disagreement between Sarri and Kepa.
In the Carabao Cup final, Kepa refused to be substituted. Chelsea went on to lose that final to Manchester City, but it seems that Sarri has buried that in the past as he is interested in bringing the Spanish goalkeeper to Italy.
Reports by Spanish outlet Sport, via Football Italia, suggest Sarri has Kepa in his sights, as he wants to avoid a goalkeeping issue at Lazio.
Lazio has two goalkeepers in their ranks but is not satisfied with the situation. The two goalkeepers are Pepe Reina and Thomas Strakosha, with both goalkeepers running out of contract in 2022. More worrisome is that Pepe Reina is approaching his 40th birthday.
Kepa has his issues at Chelsea. The arrival of Edouard Mendy has pushed the Spaniard down the pecking order at the London club. The 27-year-old has found games hard to come by and would fancy a move elsewhere if it would ensure regular playing time.
It will be a win-win for both parties if Kepa joins Lazio. Kepa would easily become Sarri’s number goalkeeper at Lazio, getting regular game time and easing the goalkeeper worries at Lazio. An initial loan deal seems to be best for the Serie A outfit.
Kepa has only made five appearances for Chelsea this season, one of which came in the Premier League. With the experienced Marcus Bettinelli on Chelsea books, the London club might as well let Kepa go when the transfer window opens in January.