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Chelsea Fine Goalkeeper Arizagabala

Chelsea have fined their goalkeeper, Kepa Arrizabalaga, a week’s wages and demanded an apology for refusing to be substituted during the Carabao Cup final defeat by Manchester City on Sunday.


The Spaniard refused to be replaced by Willy Caballero at Wembley, while he was obviously suffering cramp before the game entered penalty shootouts.

There had been reports that the club will not discipline the former Athletic Bilbao shotstopper.

“Although there was a misunderstanding, on reflection, I made a big mistake with how I handled the situation,” Kepa said in a statement released by Chelsea.

“I have done this and now I want to offer the same apology to the fans. I will learn from this episode and will accept any punishment or discipline the club decides is appropriate.

“I wanted to take the time today to apologise fully and in person to the coach, to Willy, my team-mates and to the club.”

Kepa, the club’s record £71 million signing, defied coach Mauricio Sarri’s attempt to substitute him for second choice keeper, Willy Caballero, who is thought to be better at saving penalties.

The incident infuriated the Italian coach, who walked down the tunnel before quickly returning back to the field during the game.

He, however, said he and Kepa had since had “a good conversation”. He also said the incident had been “a misunderstanding”, but added: “Kepa realises he made a big mistake in the way he reacted.

“He has apologised to me, his team-mates and the club. It is up to the club if they want to discipline him according to the club rules, but for me this matter is now closed.

“The team performance as a whole was extremely positive and it is a shame to see how this incident has overshadowed our efforts in what was a very competitive cup final.”

Though the amount was not disclosed, the club said it will donate Kepa’s fine to its Foundation.

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