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FA Cup final: Mendy benched as Arrizabalaga starts for Chelsea vs Leicester City

Thomas Tuchel has started the Spaniard ahead of the Senegal international for Saturday’s showdown against the Foxes

Edouard Mendy will start as a substitute when Chelsea take on Leicester City in Saturday’s English FA Cup final.

According to the Blues’ starting X1 revealed on social media, Kepa Arrizabalaga will be in goal against Brendan Rodgers’ Foxes, while the Senegalese is a named substitute.

Whereas, Argentina’s Willy Caballero will play no part in the crunch tie billed for Wembley Stadium as he was axed by the Blues’ boss.

The decision is understandable as the club’s second choice has played in most of the games in the tournament for the Stamford Bridge giants.

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Mendy was lured from Ligue 1 outfit Rennes in a £22m ($31m) deal as the six-time English top-flight kings sought to find greater stability between the sticks as costly errors had crept into Arrizabalaga’s game.

The 29-year-old has since proven to be one of the bargain signings, keeping 13 clean sheets in his first 17 games for the London side since the start of January.

Veteran Nigerian coach Henry Abiodun had scored the goalie high and tipped him to become one of the world’s best custodians.

“He has been one of the major differences. Even before Frank Lampard was shown the way out. He has been able to make an impressive impact since he came in,” Abiodun told Goal.

“Now that he has a very solid back three, he’s going to continue doing better. With the defensive formation right now, he [Mendy] cannot do much wrong. So far so good, I am impressed with his performance and I think, he will continue to build his confidence.

“He is on his way to writing his name in gold in world football and also becoming one of the best goalkeepers in the world

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“So, Mendy is a pride to Africa as a continent. I think what the future holds for him is great and hopefully, he doesn’t suffer any injury.”

Meanwhile, Morocco international Hakim Ziyech will lead the Blues’ attack alongside Timo Werner and Mason Mount in a 3-4-2-1 formation.

On the other side, Kelechi Iheanacho will start from the bench for the King Power Stadium side.

While Rodgers’ team would be hoping to win the title for their first time ever, the Blues are aiming to win the iconic diadem for the ninth time since they first won it during the 1969–70 season.

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