It’s hard to overstate the effect Édouard Mendy’s signing has had on Chelsea, especially in the wake of a Champions League-winning campaign that saw him equal the record for most clean sheets in a season (9 in 12) and also walk away with the UEFA Goalkeeper of the Year award.
Yet, at the same time, it might be tempting to underrate his impact as well, especially given the defensive solidity that Thomas Tuchel has engineered since his own arrival in January. (Case in point: Mendy, one of the favorites for the Yashin Trophy, getting completely overlooked for the Ballon d’Or, even as Gianluigi Donnarumma is among the 30 nominees)
But Mendy has been showing his qualities since his very first day at the club, which was barely a year ago — but feels a lot longer than that thanks to his perfect fit, perfect attitude, perfect story, and of course, near-perfect performances. He may not be the flashiest goalkeeper, but he does almost everything exceptionally well and does almost nothing very badly.
That’s a perfect recipe for success, for both Chelsea and Senegal, as the 29-year-old targets glory with both his club and his country this season.
In any case, this is a lovely profile though I’m not sure how Chris Kirkland got the gig to talk with any authority about the best goalkeeper in the world.