The manager is always right. No matter how unfair their decision seems to be at the time, the players must obey and follow their leader with the utmost dedication and sincerity. That is the unspoken code of honour in football and nobody should be able to undermine something so pristine.
But clearly, Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga seems to think that he's above everyone else and therefore doesn't have to follow the code. After all, he did sign a grand seven-year contract with the Blues.
On Sunday, the 24-year-old Spaniard decided to disobey his manager Maurizio Sarri's direct command during extra time in the Cabaro Cup final against Pep Guardiola's Manchester City when he refused to being substituted with Willy Caballero.
Throwing a fit like a baby, Arrizabalaga refused to leave the field and talked, rather argued his way out of Sarri's decision to take him out. Sarri's livid behaviour as soon as the referee let Arrizabalaga stay on the field was not only justified but also validated by the furious Chelsea fans present at the Wembley stadium who booed the Spaniard throughout the penalty shootouts.
Alas, despite Sarri's brilliant leadership and coaching throughout the scoreless yet highly engaging match, Arrizabalaga's decision to be the goalkeeper during the penalties backfired as the Citizens scored a total of four goals versus Chelsea's three to bag the win.
Letting a Sergio Aguero penalty slip from underneath him was the worst that could have happened to the Spaniard after the monstrosity he had created a few moments ago.February 24, 2019
The fact that in a verbal spat between a player and the manager of a team was won by the player throws a lot of shade at the leadership of one of the most prestigious clubs. The under-fire manager withdrawing from the fight against his own spawn will surely have repercussions on his journey ahead with Chelsea.
Arrizabalaga came forward with an explanation for the farce in the post game press conference:
"I understand that on television, on social media, they're talking about this but I am here to explain it, to say that it wasn't my intention to go against the manager. We have spoken now, and I was only trying to say I'm fine. He thought I wasn't fine. It was in tense moments, with a lot happening,” said the keeper. “I think it was just misunderstood, and unfortunate, because now people are talking about this… I don't know what to say, other than to say it was not my intention in any moment.”
Enraged with Arrizabalaga's shameful act of disrespect, Twitter didn't hold back in giving the Spanish footballer a tantrum-treatment:February 24, 2019
Kepa Arrizabalaga should never play a game for Chelsea ever again.
What he did today was nothing short of a disgrace, capped off by an absolute blunder in the Aguero penalty.
Disobeyed Sarri, disobeyed Zola, and ultimately shot his Chelsea career in the foot. Embarrassing.
Kepa Arrizabalaga suffers his first defeat as Chelsea managerðð pic.twitter.com/xOIwfWFI7k— Arnoldi (@arnoldi254) February 24, 2019
Highlights of the Kepa Arrizabalaga saga. pic.twitter.com/VhUnYx8KZg— Big Fella Yerry (@MainManMina) February 24, 2019