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Frank Lampard in battle with Chelsea to sell Kepa Arrizabalaga as Nick Pope transfer replacement is eyed


CHELSEA boss Frank Lampard is battling with the club to sell Kepa Arrizabalaga - because he wants to replace him with Nick Pope.

SunSport told you Kepa - the world's most expensive keeper - fears he is paying the price for Chelsea's defensive problems.

The Spain star, 25, has vowed to fight for his future after being axed for the 2-2 draw against Leicester on the weekend.

The Mirror say £71.6million Kepa could be on his way out under Lampard this summer, after the boss decided the last straw was last month's 2-2 draw against Arsenal.

Mikel Arteta's side had just two shots during that game.

But they claim Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia is against selling the former Athletic Bilbao man.

She personally pushed through the deal to sign him two years ago and does not want to give up on a player handed a seven-year deal worth £10m a season so soon.

But should Lampard get his way then he wants 27-year-old England and Burnley star Pope to replace him, say The Express.

The fact that Pope counts towards their homegrown quota appeals to the Blues.

But he would require a big sum to land given he has a contract with the Turf Moor side to 2023 and the club have the option to extend his deal for another 12 months.

Arrizabalaga has faced criticisms over his inability to impose himself in front of his goal. Chelsea have shipped 34 goals in 25 Prem games.

And Lampard fired a warning shot to him 11 days ago when he said: "Kepa will be honest there have been some mistakes that have cost us goals.

"It is the nature of it, so that he needs to improve."

Kepa's old club are monitoring the situation closely and if there is no improvement in his position by the end of the season they will be ready to offer him a way out.

Lampard speaks about decision to drop Kepa Arrizabalaga for Willy Caballero after Chelsea draw 2-2 at home to Leicester

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