(Reuters) - Senegal goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is undergoing a medical at Chelsea ahead of his transfer from French club Rennes, the London club’s manager Frank Lampard said.
Chelsea’s decision to boost their goalkeeping options follows a dip in form since the start of last season for first-choice keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, who was at fault in Liverpool’s second goal on Sunday.
Lampard said on Tuesday the arrival of Mendy, who played 33 games in all competitions for Rennes last campaign, helping them finish third in Ligue 1 and qualify for the Champions League, will boost competition for the number one choice at Chelsea.
“With Mendy coming in, it’s more competition so every reaction will have to be positive around that for Kepa and for Mendy to push to try and play in this team,” he said.
Mendy is expected to undergo a COVID-19 test before he can join the first-team squad.
"He (Mendy) is having a medical as we speak," Lampard said here ahead of Chelsea's League Cup game against second-tier Championship side Barnsley on Wednesday.
“As far as I’m aware, as long as he passes his tests before he travels, he will be tested with us on Thursday collectively as a team and if that is negative then he will be available to play,” Lampard added.
Lampard said newly-signed defenders Brazilian Thiago Silva and England’s Ben Chilwell could make their Chelsea debut on Wednesday, with Willy Caballero in goal.
“Thiago Silva is in the squad for tomorrow. He’s getting fit so I’ll make a decision on how many minutes he may get during the game depending on what’s best for him,” he said.
“Ben Chilwell is also in the squad, while Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech are getting closer as well.”
($1 = 0.8507 euros)
Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Chennai; Editing by Alexander Smith
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.