Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga find himself under scrutiny
Frank Lampard pointed the finger at his forwards after the game. “If you don’t score you are always liable for a sucker punch and we got it,” he told Sky Sports. But there is a growing suspicion that Chelsea are more likely to suffer stoppage-time goals like the one against Newcastle while Kepa Arrizabalaga remains their goalkeeper.
The unsuccessful attempt to parry Isaac Hayden’s header wide of the post was no howler. Other goalkeepers make more spectacular mistakes. But it was the sort of incident that has become commonplace for Kepa and in goalkeeping circles, there are question marks over his technique – as former Premier League goalkeeper Richard Lee explains.
“It is not a mistake,” Lee tells Sky Sports. “It is certainly not one that would go down as an error. If he saves it, it would go down as a very good save. However, I do think there are other goalkeepers in the Premier League who would have made the save from that header.
“If you look at the moment the header is made, his hands are just tucked inside ever so slightly. All it means is that it’s just tougher to get the coordination right. You need to have such quick hands to get them into the position they need to be in.
“From close range like that, when it is a reaction save, you don’t really need momentum to get a huge dive away. If anything, you want to have a solid position so that you can make a reaction save. His set position as the ball is headed isn’t in the optimum position it should be in. He cannot get his hands where they need to be to get solid contact on the ball.”