Kepa shows Chelsea job is ‘sh*ttiest at top end of football’

Matt Stead

Be sure to read our other Monday morning Mailbox, then send your thoughts to


Sure thing
Can we have a Kepa Mailbox?


Couldn’t sleep all night… Haven’t been so excited to wake up on a Monday morning for a while. F365 won’t disappoint.
Gaurav, MUFC (Ole)


Chelsea panto
Chelsea – can we watch you every week?


Kepa out.

Who would love to see a Peter vs Giant Chicken like fight involving Sarri and Kepa? Just me then.
Ashish S


Done up like a Kepa
Well, that was rather remarkable, wasn’t it? Kepa’s antics were surprising to say the least, and the unfortunate thing about this escapade is that neither he nor Sarri have come out of this with any credit. A pinnacle of the lose-lose, I daresay.

That is particularly unfortunate for Sarri because Chelsea were resilient, and he had them playing much better today yet ultimately, he was undermined by a £70+ million man-child, effectively. Quite rightly, Kepa’s reputation has taken the harder hit, and from what I believe to have happened, it is all of his own making. He went down twice in quick succession feigning cramp. Now you, me, and everyone with half a brain out there knows that he was purely playing for time and looking to slow the game. There was nothing wrong with him. The Chelsea bench obviously believed he was struggling, hence the intended substitution, but for Kepa to outright refuse to bow to the managers wishes is astonishing and disgraceful. It gets even worse for Kepa if it turns out that Chelsea actually wanted to make the change for footballing reasons. If they wanted to change keepers specifically for the penalties (as Caballero has proven pedigree when it comes to penalties, and he knows all the City squad) then that makes Kepa’s actions even more heinous. If he is not made an example of by spending the rest of the season in the reserves, then all of our lives are absolutely meaningless.

One last thing I wanted to throw out there because I haven’t heard it suggested anywhere else yet… If I was Sarri, and I hadn’t lost my mind through rage at the time, I would have just subbed on Caballero for an outfield player, then have him face the penalties. That would have really stuck it to Kepa. I would have loved to have seen that. Absolute scenes.

As for my beloved Blues, I am delighted to have experienced retaining a trophy. We dominated the ball again but without much penetration or imagination up front I feel. KDB just isn’t up to speed at all yet. Once again I am left frustrated with Pep for not starting Sane, but I think he has proven he knows what he is doing, where as I do not. I just hope the 120 minutes hasn’t yielded any serious or prolonged injuries, because this is where the real season begins. Also, Hazard’s penalty was audacious in the extreme.
Rusty Blue, MCFC


Well, the day after a courageous performance from United against Liverpool (how sh*t were they btw?) and I feel compelled to write in about Chelsea and City rather than the Real Derby?

Kepa just became the nadir of what has been building and perpetuating at Chelsea for a decade.  It is beyond player power, it is beyond disrespectful.  What a sh*t-hole of a club for any manager of repute to take on.

Sarri has been labelled by the media at large as struggling in recent months and has intimated himself that his squad are not listening to him, not motivated to play for him and that there are issues ongoing.  For a player to so publicly and dismissively ignore the manager’s instructions in such a high profile game is just disgraceful.  Given the circumstances leading up to the game and the speculation around the relationship between the manager and the players it is all the more disgraceful.

Kepa is 24 years old and has been at the club less than a year but is already so confident and comfortable in the Chelsea manager slaying traditions that he refused to come off and made an absolute fool of his manager.  Sarri should walk, or stay and play Kepa in the reserves for the rest of the season.  Chelsea won’t take a stand against a player, never have, never will.  So Sarri should leave and leave with his head held high and firing both barrels at his players on his way out, lay it all on the table and tell the full story behind this shambles of a club.

The main thing that I hope comes from this is that the world’s top coaches stop taking Roman’s millions in return for what must be the sh*ttiest job at the top end of club football.  I hope nobody wants to touch this club, this squad that has been infested with forms of this nonsense for years.  I hope Chelsea are left having to turn to an up and coming manager with limited experience and limited drawing power, not Zidane, not Blanc, not anyone worth their salt because the club and the players do not deserve the chance to throw yet another great manager under the bus.

Mangor United, Belfast


Why so Sarrious?
This cup final was worth watching just to see Sarri throwing a strop.
The Flan, North London 


Can he kepa his job?

This winning momentum is gonna swing the title race in City’s favour isn’t it?

Great weekend of football all across Europe!
Stijn, Amsterdam


It was nothing
Seriously what a storm in a teacup.

Kepa went down and did that hand gesture which means “I’m injured, substitute me”. The manager relied on that gesture to tell WIlly to get ready. Kepa got treatment and realised he could continue. Kepa told the bench the substitution was being made on a false premise. Sarri wasn’t paying attention and went mad. The medics told Sarri that the sub was based on mistake. Sarri understands the full picture & clarifies the position to the media after the game.

Can you imagine how angry Sarri would’ve been to sub off his no 1 keeper only to find out that he was fit enough to continue?  Everyone at Wembley who saw the whole incident (well, my only sample size is those around me & on the underground with me after) thought it was fair misunderstanding. Those who only saw part of the story on TV (and subeditors with papers to sell) now think it’s a “mutiny”. I imagine a lot of the latter group will write in tomorrow calling for heads to roll.
Alex, CFC


I was following the final on the BBC website, so I was expecting some huge argument taking place. They then posted stills of the situation and I immediately thought, this looks like a misunderstanding, a keeper thinking he is only being taken off due to the manager thinking he has cramp. Of course, once you then see Sarri’s behaviour it raises some questions.

The first one is about Sarri. Why on earth did he not stand his ground? If the substitution was being done because the player was injured, then just smile and be happy that he can continue. If you are doing a Louis Van Gaal, changing the keeper for the shoot-out, as it looks like he was doing, then stick to your guns.

Secondly, I look at this as a referee and I am gobsmacked. I was absolutely convinced that I have read that the rule is that once the substitution is on the board there is no going back. I am utterly surprised that they were allowed to change their minds. Which leaves me to another point. I was refereeing a game Saturday afternoon and the captain of one team said to me, come on, we are amateurs, stop being so correct. For me the rules are the rules and if I had been the referee I would have said, sorry pal, your manager has decided you are going off, off you go! Teams are not allowed to change their decisions about selection prior to a match, why should this be different?
Andreas Hasle (I am not commenting on Kepa…) Brussels


Am I the only one who thinks the Kepa sub debacle isn’t that big of a deal?

Manager thinks player is injured.. prepares replacement player… injured player is no longer injured and plays on?

Kepa was simply insisting he was fit to play on.

And Sarri definitely didn’t storm down the tunnel like every news outlet has said he did. Did I watch a different game to everyone else? He walked away round the corner not *down* the tunnel, seems to calm himself down and then get on with the game..?
Raoul, MUFC 


Feeling sorry for Sarri
You’re going to be inundated with mails on this but I want to make one thing clear. The impending cover-up by Chelsea is completely logical from the standpoint of the manager and the player. By ‘cover-up’, I mean any vague references to a ‘misunderstanding’ on the touchline.

Sarri knows that virtually any explanation is less damaging than that of his own players not letting him make substitutions. Helps the player too as it gives him a way out. All rather transparent though, isn’t it?

Felt massively sorry for Sarri by the way. I ‘m not a Chelsea man but think the club should be giving him time, even in the face of player mutiny etc.
Andrew, THFC


Another VAR farce
When is consistency and clarity going to come to VAR. No one seems to understand it’s process or it’s execution. Semi final Harry Kane looks offside goes through is taken down (allegedly) and VAR confirms he’s onside therefore pen. Beside the ridiculous issue of a Lino raising his flag and the defenders stopping it was clearly stated that the Lino was wrong and that the Ref had used the correct process.

Fast forward to yesterday Hazard breaks through it’s very tight, we know the score, Lino keep your flag down and let the phase play out then review if required. Lino raises his flag and the ref gives offside, WTF there is no point implementing VAR when literally no one knows what the fuck to do.
Kr. P Didi


Jurgen Klinsmann in
Having watched the Kepa Farce, it is clear that Sarri has completely lost the team and needs to go.

The real question though, is, who could actually be successful with this Chelsea squad? The players have quit on their last three managers, two of whom had guided them to a league title the previous season. Sarri said earlier in the season that he didn’t know how the motivate the players, and that couldn’t be more apparent, but who put their could?

Maybe just hire a cheerleader who lets the players do what they want. Zidane might be a perfect pick, but does he really want to deal with the mess that Chelsea has become? Kurgan Klinsman is available, and he proved with the US National Team that he didn’t believe in actual tactics.
Ryan, MCFC


Jorg the turd
I was proud of the performance today, the aim was not to be embarrassed – but reading Matt Stead’s 16 Conclusions rather pointed up the only mention Jorginho got was than he took a penalty. Why the hell was he even in the rotation for the shoot-out? He was the sum of the square root of sweet fanny adams all day, and he gets to take the first?

I get that a shoot-out is a crap shoot, but what the hell was that all about?


You can fill in the rest of the above sentence.
Steve (fill in the blanks), Los Angeles


I have actually felt sorry for Jorginho in recent months being the scapegoat for Chelsea’s poor form. However to do that silly penalty run up yet again deserves all the criticism coming his way.

Watching it go to penalties I instantly knew he would take one and knew that he would do that pathetic jump, skip or whatever on Earth it is. And  on top of that, I also knew he would miss! I mean if I knew what he was going to do I’m pretty sure Ederson did too. Didn’t Jorginho think to himself “I’ve done my silly trick twice already this season I best mix it up and smash it into the roof of the net this time”. The mindset just beggars belief. It’s either arrogance or maybe the player is a bit on the dim side.

Looking at it again it must be one of the worst penalty techniques in history as it seems after the jump he can only hit it towards the keepers left and it also reduces power dramatically as he cannot swing his leg back. I just don’t get it.
Frankie AFC


United view of City
If I may be so bold as a United fan to offer 50% of the required conclusions on Keplsea v MCFC’s 1 of please god not 4. . .

1) Vincent Kompany is a player that is impossible to dislike. He is exceptionally good, completely professional and either a superb actor or a genuinely decent guy. It troubles me greatly that I never mind him lifting a trophy.

2) Sterling likewise. I wish it had been in a meaningless friendly but it was great to see him score the winner against ‘Kepa’, who presumably if he was black, Muslim or liked nitrogen would be executed at dawn but as is, will probably get a pay raise for his new manager.

3) Otamendi is awful. So awful in fact that it makes you realise just how unbelievably good the front 6 are because I wouldn’t have him over Young or Darmian and that is the worst verdict a professional defender should ever have because I would replace either with a small brick.

4) Sarri will be fired within the week. If he had made the ref get Kepa off then maybe not. You cannot let that go.

5) It’s a trophy and obviously I wish ‘We’ had won it but City’s kind of half-hearted jumping around, out of time, need a cool down, can we get back to the Prem, who is that weird guy lifting the trophy first celebrations didn’t exactly diminish the 5th place priority of it!

6) David Loliz

7) In my mind, any penalty situation where you immediately know which team is going to win reflects true dominance. Like Germany. Although Hazard. . . . mmmmmfffff.

8) Does Pep wear a white t-shirt under a sexy grey tight jumper or a white and grey long sleeved t-shirt? Either way, why didn’t you come to us my sweet.
Dave Rashford, Manchester


More thoughts
I’m no neutral but just four points:

1. I feel sorry for Sarri after that.  Has any player publicly humiliated any manager in that fashion in any English League let alone a cup final?

2. If you’re taken to pens then obviously the opposition pushed you to the very end.  Respect to Chelsea.  Sarri changed his starting line and his subs and Chelsea were, frankly, unlucky to lose today.

3. With the greatest respect, I don’t care which club you support, NOBODY puts you through the mill to win things like Manchester City do.  Ffs.

4. Fernandinho will be a massive loss in terms of the retaining the PL title.
Mark (No fingernails, toenails or hair left to pull out) MCFC.