Keeper's Antics Were Just A 'Misunderstanding', Says Chelsea Boss Maurizio Sarri

Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri says Kepa Arrizabalaga's refusal to be substituted was a "misunderstanding".

With score 0-0 in the final minutes of the extra time in Carabao Cup final against Manchester City the manager attempted to substitute the keeper with reserve keeper. But Arrizabalaga refused to go out of the pitch and furious Sarri in response seemed to be leaving the match going down in tunnel but returned to the bench.

The $92.8 million signing, a world record, went on to play the penalties but his team were edged out 4-3 by Manchester City.

The undermining of the managers authority drew widespread criticism for the keeper and a question mark on Sarri's authority and future in the club. But the manager cooled down the situation in post-match press conference.

"I misunderstood the problem and only realised the situation when the doctor arrived at the bench," he said.

"He understood I asked for a change for his physical problem. He said: 'I haven't a physical problem.' And he was right."

Kepa also cited "confusion" for the incident.

"It was misunderstood. In no moment was it my intention to disobey or anything like that with the boss," said the 24-year-old Spaniard.

Chelsea's most successful captain John Terry said it is an attempt to protect the player.

"Whether that has been dealt with inside the dressing room, I don't know," said Terry.

"Publicly, that's his approach. He's protecting his player."


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