New Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy has been warned that the club is a bad environment for goalkeepers.
This is according to former England and Liverpool goalkeeper David James.
“I studied Kepa before he came to Chelsea and he fascinated me,” James told talkSPORT.
“This guy was capable of making saves I hadn’t seen in the Premier League for a long time, top end stuff, proper, proper top end stuff.
“But then he would throw one in and I’d think, ‘OK, there’s a flaw here but if you get the right coaching and right environment for him, this guy could be the best goalkeeper in the Premier League’.
“But I don’t think Kepa’s had the protection at Chelsea, I think he’s been hung out to dry. If he doesn’t do something right, it’s wrong and he gets absolutely lambasted by everybody.
“And I’ve been in Kepa’s position, when I was at Liverpool I was that guy.
“In the end you have to look at yourself to see what you can do, but it’s also about whether you’ve got the environment…
“You spend £72m on a player, talk about an investment, then you’ve got to work out how much do you spend to make him better rather than, ‘you’re that cost, you should sort it out yourself or not make the mistakes’, which is ludicrous.
“With Kepa it just seems like confirmation bias; everyone doesn’t like him, so let’s get someone else who could fix the problem.
“I’ve analysed Mendy, he’s good with his feet, his positioning is good and he likes coming from crosses, which would be interesting if he drops a couple in the Premier League. Give him the opportunity and see if he still comes for crosses after that…
“Liverpool had this problem for a few years where they were brining in Simon Mignolet, the best performer in the Premier League, and all of a sudden he doesn’t improve. Then the next keeper [Loris Karius] doesn’t improve either, and then rather than looking at the individuals you’re looking at the environment and whether the environment they’re working in is conducive to improving players.
“So with Chelsea, if you’re going to spend £72m on a player and then replace him with a £22m player, you’ve got to ask, is the environment right for either goalkeeper?”