Former England team-mates, Jamie Carragher and Frank Lampard, are now on opposite sides of the footballing divide with one now a successful pundit whilst the other is making his way in management.
It therefore goes with the territory that Carragher will scrutinise certain aspects of the teams he is employed to watch and comment on, and after his former side Liverpool scored five goals against Lampard’s Chelsea side, he didn’t hold back in his condemnation of Blues goalkeeper, Kepa.
“Chelsea won’t go no further unless they change their goalkeeper,” Carragher had said to Sky Sports in the wake of the defeat, cited by the Daily Express.
“Going back to how important goalkeepers are I look at this Chelsea team and there’s a lot I like about it, it does remind me in a lot of ways the position Jurgen Klopp was in a couple of years ago.
“[Lampard] has done as much as he can, yes Frank’s still in his early stages but those big signings can completely transform you as a team.
“I still think Chelsea need a defender, you see how many goals they’ve conceded. I think a lot of that is down to the goalkeeper being totally honest.”
When asked in his pre-match press conference for Chelsea’s final game of the season what he thought of Carragher’s comments, Lampard was terse in his response.
“I don’t want to comment on other people’s comments about players because that is their opinion and they are very well positioned to have their opinions,” he said, cited by the Daily Express.
“I have to work behind the scenes with every position in the team […] that goes for every player in the team, not just Kepa or any individual position.”
Whether Lampard decides to dispense with the young custodian’s services this summer will be seen in due course, but the question mark will be whether a cost-effective replacement can be found.
The financial strain that the coronavirus pandemic has seemingly put all football clubs under will also ensure that the Blues, should they decide to sell Kepa, are unlikely to get anywhere close to the record fee they paid to Athletic Club for him back in 2018.