Chelsea is going on an early era Roman Abramovich spending spree. Kepa Arrizabalaga has not been directly affected but should be concerned.
Whatever notion of Chelsea having a war chest has been swept aside. The club has and apparently will continue to spend like it is 2004 as they seek to catch up to Liverpool and Manchester City. Ziyech and (presumably) Werner are just the tip of the iceberg.
While only attackers and a left back have been targeted thus far, that does not mean they are the only targets. After all, Werner rumors went from zero to one hundred in a matter of days. If the Blues are to continue to spend, every starting role on the brink should start to be questioned. That is why Kepa Arrizabalaga needs to be concerned.
Arrizabalaga’s position already came under threat this season. Not only was he dropped in favor of Willy Caballero for several matches but that entire period saw transfer rumor after transfer rumor. Not just rumors about a new incoming keeper, but rumors about Arrizabalaga being sold after just two years at the club.
The Spanish keeper eventually found his starting spot again but that does not mean the danger has passed. Arrizabalaga remains, statistically, a keeper below Chelsea’s level. He has the worst save percentage in the entire league. He has the fifth lowest clean sheet percentage. And he sits towards the bottom in nearly every xG category.
Chelsea has invested a lot of money and time into Arrizabalaga. The Blues will struggle to move him on given his contract length and the transfer fee. But that does not mean he is safe. Especially with the Blues spending as they are, and in positions that are not necessarily in need of further reinforcement, Arrizabalaga should worry about the club buying a new keeper.
This is based mainly on the Havertz rumors. Chelsea very much does not need Havertz. But when a player of a certain quality of a certain price is available, it becomes an ask questions later sort of deal. It will mean a current start will have to drop and Arrizabalaga could find himself in the same situation quite easily.
Andre Onana has been the most heavily linked. At just £35 million and the two clubs having a good relationship, Chelsea would be foolish to not at least try for him. The Blues could even make a move for Gianluigi Donnarumma with his contract running low and Milan not really in a place to hold on to him.
But really, if Chelsea is a club willing to look at Havertz on top of everyone else they have already, then the Blues could go for any keeper in the world. Arrizabalaga could rebound yet, but he surely will not be able to stand up against those odds.
The Blues are free spending again. That is good for the club and Frank Lampard. But some players, such as Arrizabalaga, will only be looking over their shoulder until this current transfer flurry ends.