Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy almost quit football six years ago, he revealed during an interview with Eurosport.
Mendy signed along the dotted line with Chelsea in the summer for what Sky Sports reported to be a deal worth £22M.
The Senegal international was drafted in by Frank Lampard following the continual failures of Kepa Arrizabalaga, with Willy Caballero not being the required standard to start in goal for a side with Chelsea’s ambitions.
Though it is very much early days, Mendy has shown promise at Stamford Bridge. A superb stop against Sevilla in the Champions League this week was perhaps his best moment in a Chelsea shirt so far.
He is expected to start against Manchester United at Old Trafford tomorrow, but things could have been a lot different for the 28-year-old.
He’s quoted by Eurosport revealing that as little as six years ago he almost called time on his football career:
“I had to take unemployment support (in 2014) so I could dedicate myself totally to football. If someone had said to me six years ago that I’d end up here, I wouldn’t have bothered looking at or listening to them.”
“I did genuinely have my doubts about whether I’d carry on … It was incredibly difficult. My partner was expecting our first baby and so the unemployment support wasn’t going to be enough … I did start looking for other work.”
“I had the opportunity to go to Marseille and I was given a trial. Fortunately it worked … it was a relief. A year to go without football is an incredibly long time.”
It’s an inspiring story for any young footballer who is thinking of throwing in the towel. Mendy has made it to the big time having had to take the long route.