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'I don't count clean sheets' - Mendy shuns limelight for Chelsea's defensive record & reflects on first season

10:20 BST 27/04/2021
Edouard Mendy Chelsea 2020-21
The Senegal international goalkeeper says his task between the sticks is made easier by the players in front of him

Chelsea No.1 Edouard Mendy has admitted that he doesn’t count clean sheets while talking up the importance of a strong team dynamic with regards to the art of defending.

Mendy has quickly established himself as one of the most reliable goalkeepers in the Premier League since joining Chelsea from Rennes for £22 million ($31m) last summer.

The 29-year-old has recorded 22 shut-outs in his first 38 outings across all competitions for the Blues, but is refusing to take sole credit for their defensive prowess.

What's been said?

"I know I made a lot of clean sheets but I'm not counting them," Mendy told France Football. 

"That's because it's not something that I make on my own. The goalkeeper is as important as the guy in front of him. At the end of the day, I'm the one who has to make the stops, yes. 

"But in front of me, there is a whole structure, ten players who move and complicate the task of the opponent. It's a team performance and not something I can own on my own."

What else did Mendy say?

Mendy went on to reveal that he was initially made aware of Chelsea’s interest in his services during the coronavirus lockdown last season, before opening up on how he has settled into life at Stamford Bridge.

"In March 2020, I really heard about their (Chelsea's) intentions," he added during a separate interview with L’Equipe. 

"The idea was that if there was a move for a goalkeeper in the summer I was on the list. It was a long process, since it only ended in September, but in the end, I'm where I wanted to be. 

"I think Rennes had a good return on their investment, Chelsea are satisfied, and so everyone is happy.

"You had to be strong from the start, at a big club like this, you are expected to perform immediately, you have to respond, send very good signals, show why they believed in you, perform or even out-perform [your level].

"The fact is also that between [Chelsea goalkeeper coach] Christophe Lollichon, Petr Cech, the staff, Frank Lampard and the advice of the French-speaking players, I was quickly put at ease, and off we went.

"And the more we won, the better it was for my integration, which also allowed me to adapt as quickly as possible."

What can Mendy & Chelsea achieve this season?

Chelsea struggled for consistency in the first half of the 2020-21 campaign under Frank Lampard, but Thomas Tuchel has steadied the ship since replacing the 42-year-old in January.

Mendy has played a crucial role as the Blues have risen to fourth in the Premier League while also reaching the final of the FA Cup and semi-finals in the Champions League, with a domestic and European double now in sight.

Chelsea will face Real Madrid in the first leg of their last-four tie on Tuesday night, with Mendy likely to retain his place between the sticks after notching another clean sheet in their 1-0 win at West Ham over the weekend.

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