Kepa Arrizabalaga substitution row didn't split Chelsea dressing room, says Pedro

Kepa’s refusal to be substituted at Wembley in the Carabao Cup final raised questions over Maurizio Sarri’s authority at Stamford Bridge

Alan O'Brien
Thursday 28 February 2019 11:06
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Maurizio Sarri on Kepa Arrizabalaga: he has 'served his time'

Pedro has insisted that the Kepa Arrizabalaga substitution row did not split the Chelsea dressing room in the wake of Sunday’s Carabao Cup final defeat against Manchester City.

Kepa’s refusal to be substituted at Wembley saw him fined one week’s wage and subsequently dropped for Tuesday’s win over Tottenham, with Willy Caballero stepping into the fray.

The incident raised questions over Maurizio Sarri’s authority at Stamford Bridge – while several reports claimed members of the Chelsea squad had sided with the young goalkeeper – but last night’s defiant 2-0 win suggested the matter had been swiftly resolved.

Speaking to ESPN, Pedro said Chelsea had learned from the controversy and remained united as a squad.

“There has been a lot of talk this week and that always destabilises [things] a little, but the truth is that in the dressing room we are together, as a great team,” he said.

“We have not given much importance to everything that has been talked about and in the end that is the most important thing.

“We have all talked to each other in the dressing room. We’ve also talked to Willy and we’ve talked to the coach. The truth is that we have solved all the problems and I think it has been a [small] incident rather than a serious problem.

“It always serves to learn. We are with Kepa, with Willy and with the manager. This is the path that we have to follow. Now we need to get ready very well for the match against Fulham because it is another final.”

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