Chelsea have had a pretty bad week overall, as news came they’re facing a two-year ban from adding players. Today, they at least had a shot at a trophy, taking on Manchester City in the finals of the Carabao Cup.
In perhaps typical cup final fashion, the match was scoreless and about to head to penalties. That’s dramatic enough, but things got even more interesting when Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa was about to be substituted off, because Kepa had other ideas.
😳 – Have you EVER seen anything like it!?
Maurizio Sarri tries to substitute Kepa Arrizabalaga for Willy Caballero, but Kepa refuses to come off and Sarri is absolutely FURIOUS! 😡 pic.twitter.com/Q81v6ry3Kk
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) February 24, 2019
That’s essentially the soccer equivalent of a starting pitcher attempting to convince a manager that he shouldn’t be taken out of a game during a mound visit, except it never happens in soccer. But unlike baseball, this somehow ended up with the player getting his way. Then the shootout started, and Kepa rewarded Kepa’s faith in Kepa by making save attempts like this:
Welp. Chelsea ended up losing 4-3, and Vincent Kompany, among others, noted that his potential replacement’s penalty saving skill was missed:
Vincent Kompany: "I know how good Willy Caballero is on penalties, last time we won it he won it for us so I didn't want him to come on! It didn't happen in the end. Of course I have never seen it, I wish I could do it whenever I get subbed."
— Matt Law (@Matt_Law_DT) February 24, 2019
Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri is probably on his way out, and this may have hastened his departure.