Edouard Mendy: ‘At a club like Chelsea, you have to win’

Edouard Mendy of Chelsea poses with his shirt at Chelsea Training Ground on September 24, 2020 in Cobham, England.

New Chelsea signing Edouard Mendy has outlined his ambitions after joining the club he supported as a boy.

Mendy completed his £22million transfer from Rennes on Thursday morning as Frank Lampard looked to increase competition for the No1 spot at Stamford Bridge.

Kepa Arrizabalaga, the world’s most expensive goalkeeper, joined Chelsea in 2018 but has struggled to impress under Lampard and has made a string of mistakes this season already.

While Mendy is expected to eventually emerge as the club’s No.1 goalkeeper, the Senegalese international is more than aware of what is required at his new club.

“I want to adapt to this league, continue my progression that has been constant for a number of years, and to win,” he told the club’s official website. “At a club like Chelsea, you have to win.”

“I’ve been a Chelsea supporter since I was little. I adore this club. When I was 12 I had the chance with a past club I played for to go to Brighton, and we watched a match. I thought English football was amazing. We went into a shop and I saw the Chelsea shirt, this was about 2003 when Ranieri was the manager, and I bought this shirt. So I’ve always liked this club."

Since Roman Abramovich bought Chelsea in 2003, the club has established a strong fanbase in Africa by signing some of the biggest stars from the continent.

The likes of Didier Drogba, Michael Essien, Samuel Eto’o and John Obi Mikel have all starred for the club since then, while Liberian legend George Weah spent a season on loan at Stamford Bridge in 2000.

Mendy will be the club’s first African goalkeeper, and the 28-year-old is looking to continue that legacy.

“Most of the biggest African talent has played for this team,” he continued. “Drogba, Essien, Eto’o, Mikel. When you see that, you want to continue it. Regarding the goalkeeper, I am the first, so it really makes me very proud, and it’s also a big responsibility.”

As reported by Standard Sport, former Blues ‘keeper Petr Cech, who is now the club’s technical and performance advisor, played a pivotal role in bringing Mendy to the club.

Like Mendy, Cech joined the club from Rennes back in 2004, but Mendy’s rise – having been playing in the third tier of French football six years ago – has been meteoric.

“When this story is discussed, then I realise the path I have been on in my career,” Mendy continued. 

“It’s true that it’s incredible. People say hard work pays off, and it does. I have worked very hard; I haven’t taken anything for granted. I was at Marseille, and then Reims, and then Rennes, and now Chelsea. It’s been a constant progression, and now I am ready to continue on that upward path.”

“Yes, he [Cech] called me while the transfer was ongoing and reassured me. It was great to have someone from the club speak to me. It showed me they really wanted me, and it was really appreciated.”
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