Maurizio Sarri Sends Kepa a Message, Drops Him in Chelsea Win over Tottenham

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Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri sent a message to goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, as well as the rest of the players, by dropping the No. 1 for the London derby at home versus Tottenham Hotspur.

“It’s a choice, it’s a message for my group,” Sarri said ahead of Wednesday night’s match, won by Chelsea 2-0, on the goalkeeper benching.

In the prematch press conference on Tuesday, Sarri said he did not want to “kill” (literally) his £71 million shot stopper for his defying manager’s orders and refusing to come out of the EFL Cup on Sunday when ordered, but he also wasn’t sure whether he was going to bench Kepa or not.

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Obviously, Sarri decided to go with Willy Caballerro instead, and the decision paid off. The Italian demoted the most expensive goalkeeper in world history, letting it Caballerro was hardly tested, but he did keep a clean sheet, and the win over Spurs effectively put the north London side’s title hopes for this year on ice.

Tottenham are now nine points back of first place Liverpool, and remain in third place.

Chelsea, who received their scoring from Pedro and a Kieran Trippier own goal, remain in sixth place two points behind Manchester United and three behind Arsenal.

They do however have a game in hand on United.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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