Goalkeepers are arguably one of the most important yet underappreciated positions in football and if you don’t have a top quality one, it could cost a good amount of points over the course of the season.
While West Ham broke their transfer record twice on Felipe Anderson and Issa Diop one of the cheaper deals which could turn out to be one of their best, is former Arsenal man, Lukasz Fabianski. The Hammers signed the Swansea City man for £7 million, after the Poland international had spent three seasons at the Welsh club.
While West Ham signed Fabianski for a relatively low fee, Chelsea smashed the record for a goalkeeper by signing Kepa Arrizabalaga in a £71 million deal. After losing Courtois to Real Madrid, they smashed the record to bring in the former Athletic Bilbao man.
So with both clubs signing new goalkeepers this summer, let’s compare the two…
A product of the Athletic Bilbao academy, Arrizabalaga only broke into the Bilbao first-team two seasons ago having spent a successful loan spell at Real Valladolid and had attracted interest from Real Madrid last season. The Spaniard has had an easy start to life so far at Chelsea as the Blues have surged to the top of the league and have won five games out of five.
The young Spaniard has not only got the pressure of replacing arguably one of the five best goalkeepers in the world in Thibaut Courtois but also the label as the world’s most expensive ‘keeper. Although he may not have the ability of Ederson, Kepa is like most modern day goalies and is comfortable with the ball at his feet. Where he excels however is his positioning and ability to make the right decisions but in truth, Chelsea have overpaid.
The club may have a player that could turn out to be a good player but for now, it seems Chelsea have paid too much.
TT Grade: B-
After signing Joe Hart last year, what West Ham needed was a solid reliable goalkeeper who won’t make mistakes and will help bed in a young centreback in Issa Diop and that’s just what they’ve bought.
While during his time at Arsenal Fabianski looked like a goalkeeper who was always ready to make a mistake but at Swansea, he transformed himself into a dependable and reliable goalkeeper. Last season he was one of the few players to perform to his level in a campaign where the club slumped to relegation.
For the fee West Ham paid, it looks like they got an absolute steal, and possibly one of the best out of the host of new recruits to join the club.
TT Grade: B
Kepa could turn into one of the best goalkeepers in the world and for the amount Chelsea paid for him, the club must be praying he does. At only 23, he’s nowhere near close to his prime years and still has a lot to show the league.
In Fabianski, West Ham have not only filled a massive void but also barely spent any money. The experienced goalkeeper is going to be crucial in the club’s fortunes this season and still has a few years left in his prime. For those reasons, the West Ham wins this one.
West Ham and Chelsea fans…what do you think?
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