Rennes goalkeeper Mendy on brink of Chelsea switch


London (AFP) – Senegal goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is expected to complete his move to Chelsea from Rennes on Tuesday, Stamford Bridge boss Frank Lampard has confirmed.

The 28-year-old was undergoing a medical with the London club, with Lampard indicating the deal should be completed shortly afterwards.

Mendy’s arrival will provide competition for Spain goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, who has struggled for form and confidence.

The giant stopper will join Chelsea in a deal reaching a reported £20 million ($26 million), which would take the club’s spending in the summer transfer market to around £220 million.

“Mendy’s having a medical as we speak, so, subject to that being OK, later on he’ll become our player at that point,” Lampard said.

“With Mendy coming in, it’s more competition, so every reaction will have to be positive around that from Kepa. Mendy as he comes in himself will push to try and play in this team, we know that.”

Mendy will become manager Lampard’s seventh senior signing of a hectic summer, with Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell, Kai Havertz, Thiago Silva and Malang Sarr having already come through the Stamford Bridge doors.

Lampard expects Mendy to be available for selection straight away and not to have to quarantine, leaving the possibility open for a Premier League debut at West Brom on Saturday.

Kepa produced his latest pivotal mistake in Sunday’s 2-0 loss to Liverpool in the Premier League, and Mendy’s arrival will put the £72 million Spain international’s regular place under great pressure.

Lampard confirmed technical director Petr Cech had influenced Mendy’s signing, given the ex-Chelsea stopper’s specific goalkeeping knowledge.

Challenging Kepa to react positively to Mendy’s arrival, Lampard said: “It’s in everybody’s hands in the squad to push, to train, to have the right attitude, to try to compete to get in the team.

“So that remains the same, so I’m not making any final statements at all at the minute — football’s not like that.”

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