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Chelsea new boy Kepa gives awkward De Gea comment a wide berth

The world’s most expensive goalkeeper, Kepa Arrizabalaga, has avoided answering questions over whether he could replace David de Gea as Spain’s No 1 goalkeeper.

Arrizabalaga joined the Blues in a deal worth £71.6million (€80million) this summer after Chelsea activated the release clause in his Athletic Bilbao contract. And the keeper has made a positive impact upon his Premier League arrival, with Kepa keeping two clean sheets as Chelsea have recorded a 100% record from their four matches played.

As the main rival to De Gea’s No 1 jersey in the Spain squad, some observers called for Kepa to replace De Gea during the 2018 World Cup when the Manchester United man endured an embarrassing calamity against Portugal in the opener.

And the keeper had to be at his diplomatic best when he faced more awkward questions ahead of Spain’s Uefa Nations League match against England over the weekend.

“It is a question for the coach,” Kepa told AS when asked about beating De Gea to the Spain No 1 jersey.

“What I will do is work, although it is clear that we all want to play.

“The coach will decide the best for the team but in practice I will try to make an effort for the good of the group above all.”

When asked if he sees himself as equal to De Gea in terms of ability, Kepa added: “I have always stayed focused, working to the fullest.

“All players work to compete and play.

“The coach decides and we will accept whatever it is, always in good harmony.”

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