Chelsea have announced the signing of Edouard Mendy from Rennes, with the goalkeeper joining on a five-year deal at a cost of £22 million ($29m).
The move has been in the works for some time, with Goal having previously reported that the Blues had been in the market for a new shot-stopper to compete with the error-prone Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Following the announcement on Thursday morning, the France-born Senegal international admitted that it was a dream come true to be signing for such a prestigious club.
“I am so excited to be joining Chelsea. It’s a dream for me to be a part of this exciting squad and to work with Frank Lampard and all of his coaching staff,” the 28-year-old said. “I look forward to meeting my team-mates and can’t wait to get started.”
Mendy is not the first goalkeeper to have made the switch from Rennes to Stamford Bridge, with club legend Petr Cech – now part of the technical and performance team at Chelsea – having also trodden the same path back in 2004.
Fittingly, Blues director Marina Granovskaia revealed that Cech played his part in identifying Mendy as a good fit for the squad as they look to return to challenging at the highest level following a few seasons of ups and downs.
“As soon as Petr Cech and our technical team identified Edouard as the most suitable goalkeeper to complement our existing group, there was only one player we wanted to bring in,” Granovskaia added.
“Edouard arrives following a season of real success with Rennes, he is ambitious for more, and we welcome him to our club.”
The arrival of Mendy will doubtless see calls from fans to immediately install the ‘keeper as first choice ahead of Kepa, with the world’s most expensive shot-stopper struggling for form and confidence over the past few seasons.
Indeed, a string of howlers in his last few matches alone has fans and pundits alike questioning whether the 25-year-old can return to putting in the kind of performances that saw Chelsea break the bank to sign him back in 2018.
For Frank Lampard’s part, the manager will be hoping that the additional challenge from Mendy will see an upturn in form for the Spaniard, who may have to spend some time on the sidelines if his boss plans to drop his latest acquisition in at the deep end.