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UCL: Kepa Arrizabalaga speaks about Valencia and playing with youngsters in front of him

Image source: Getty Images

The Champions League group stage returns this week, with Chelsea hosting Valencia at Stamford Bridge.

Frank Lampard’s men are in the competition for the first time since 2017/18.

Ahead of the game, the Blues goalkeeper Kepa Arizzabalaga has faced the press.

Last year I feel like we tried to play from the back, whatever the pressure. We are a little more direct this time. With a bit more energy in our play,” he started.

On Valencia, the goalkeeper said: “Valencia are always a dangerous team. Their circumstances may not be the best, but they can make you more dangerous. I am expecting the best type of Valencia performance. I know some of their players, they are compact, defend well and have some world-class players.”

Chelsea didn’t manage to keep a clean sheet: “We have been scoring goals, but no clean sheet. You try to really work on that, the whole team, it is something we want to achieve that as a team. Last year we had a few more, but if we continue to work hard then it will come.”

On playing with youngsters in front of him he said: “At the start of the season we had a few teams who were the youngest of the club, we have a very impressive team for the present. We don’t have much experience right now, but we will grow. The players who have come in have done very well and it’s good for the fans to see these players.”

When asked about David Luiz, who left the club for Arsenal, Kepa said: “Since last year we have lost some important players, but we can’t speak about players who aren’t here. We have total confidence in the players who are here. We ave quality throughout the team.”

In conclusion, the goalkeeper revealed what he feeling about Chelsea’s future in the tournament: “Many will be playing their first Champions League game, but we have been waiting for this for a long time. We can’t wait to play at Stamford Bridge. Even though we are a young team we are going to push and try to attack.”

Champions League Press Conference: Lampard on Valencia, N’Golo Kante injury and Tammy Abraham