Chelsea’s Kepa Arrizabalaga has insisted that ‘in no moment was it my intention to disobey’ Maurizio Sarri but refused to apologise for his actions.
Sarri called Kepa to be substituted ahead of Chelsea’s penalty shootout against Manchester City in the EFL Final but the goalkeeper chose to stay on the field, prompting a furious standoff between the player and Coach.
The Blues went on to lose 4-3 in the shootout and the Spain No 2 has since released a statement defending his behaviour, while stressing there was no problem with the former Napoli boss.
“First of all, I have to say it was misunderstood,” he told the club’s official website.
“In no moment was it my intention to disobey, or anything like that with the boss. Just that it was misunderstood, because I had been attended to by the medics twice, and he thought that I wasn’t in condition to continue.
“It was two or three minutes of confusion until the medics got to the bench, and they explained everything well.
“This was nothing to do with the problems I had this week, with [hamstring] it wasn’t that. And, well, it was misunderstood. Because he thought I couldn’t continue, and - fundamentally - I was trying to say that physically I was fine.
“I know if you see it from outside, I don’t know how it went out, it is not the best image. I have spoken with the boss. I think it was misunderstood.
“I understand that on television, on social media, they’re talking about this but I am here to explain it, to say that it wasn’t my intention to go against the manager.
“We have spoken now, and I was only trying to say I’m fine. He thought I wasn’t fine. I don’t think it has to be the major act of this Final.
“I understand we played a good level against one of the best teams in the world.
“We were close to winning, obviously we’re sad that we didn’t, and I think the team needs to continue playing like this, because today we’ve shown we can compete against the best teams.
“Among the negatives, we have to take the positives.”
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