Friday, September 16, 2022

By Nick Purewal, PA

Kepa Arrizabalaga has joked he would have to start in goal if the South faced the North in a Premier League All-Star match.

New Chelsea owner Todd Boehly has floated the idea of the Premier League adopting the American sporting custom of an All-Star contest.

Co-controlling Blues owner Boehly believes an All-Star clash could raise as much as 200million US Dollars (£174million) for the English footballing pyramid.

Chelsea’s Spain goalkeeper Kepa admitted an All-Star match could be difficult to fit into football’s already crowded calendar, but did not totally shoot down the idea.

When asked who would start in goal in the South’s line-up in the mooted All-Star clash, Kepa jokingly replied: “Me of course!

“It would be a big game, there’s a lot of big players in this league, both in the North and the South.

“We will see, it’s a different idea, but I don’t know at what point we could play this game. So we will see, I don’t know.

“I heard something about it but I didn’t watch Todd saying that.

“It’s a completely different idea, so you never know. We’d have to know a little bit more about it.”

Chelsea’s players are getting to grips with a new manager to go along with the Stamford Bridge club’s new owners.

Chelsea v Leicester City – Premier League – Stamford Bridge
Todd Boehly, right, has made a big impact in a short time as Chelsea co-controlling owner (Adam Davy/PA)

Graham Potter oversaw his first match at the Blues helm in Wednesday’s frustrating 1-1 Champions League draw with RB Salzburg at Stamford Bridge.

Potter was headhunted from Brighton by new owners Boehly and Behdad Eghbali to replace Thomas Tuchel, who was sacked last week.

Chelsea’s fans chanted Tuchel’s name on 21 minutes against Salzburg, to pay tribute to the German boss and his 2021 Champions League triumph with the Blues.

Kepa admitted Chelsea’s sadness at Tuchel’s exit, but insisted the Blues and their fans must now throw their support behind new manager Potter.

“First of all we are sad obviously because with Thomas we achieved big things together,” said Kepa.

“We had a very good time with him, so it’s sad always when one manager is sacked.

Chelsea v RB Salzburg – UEFA Champions League – Group E – Stamford Bridge
Graham Potter, pictured, has taken the helm at Chelsea (John Walton/PA)

“And now we have a new start, different ideas, and I think all the fans, they are waiting for what is going to happen, how it’s going to be.

“So let’s train, take the ideas quick, now we have a couple of days without a game, so let’s train and take his ideas.

“It’s been a bit of a crazy few last days, but it’s a new manager, new ideas and it’s only the beginning.

“Graham is very positive in his mind, and he tries to give us possibilities on the pitch.

“We’ve only had two or three trainings with him, but it’s a good starting point already.”

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