The Senegalese shared his journey in football and revealed how much he hated standing between the goal posts earlier in his career
Senegalese international and Chelsea star Edouard Mendy has revealed he doesn’t want to be a goalkeeper.
Prior to his move to the Premier League giants, the 29-year-old was relatively unknown as he played for Ligue 1 side Rennes.
Nonetheless, he rose to prominence after joining the Blues on a Â£ 22million ($ 31million) deal as Thomas Tuchel’s men sought to find greater strength between the sticks, because costly mistakes had crept into Kepa Arrizabalaga’s game.
He has since proven to be one of the bargain signings, making crucial saves for Londoners who finished fourth in the 2020-21 Premier League campaign.
In a conversation with UEFA website ahead of Wednesday’s Super League cracker against Villareal in Belfast, the African explained how much he hated playing as a goalkeeper.
“I didn’t always want to be a goalie, but I didn’t have much of a future higher up the pitch,” he said.
âI was asked to go into the goal, and it all happened naturally after that. I have known all the divisions in France, from the sixth division to Ligue 1.
âIn between, there was a period when I was unemployed for a year, at 22.
âNever having been a professional, it’s difficult to become a professional footballer afterwards, but I worked that year, I worked twice as hard as the others.
âI was lucky on my side and luckily it paid off. I had the chance to sign for Olympique de Marseille. And I just went up from there.
Mendy played a key role in Chelsea’s Champions League success – with 12 games and nine conceding goals – a feat that saw him equal the scoreless tournament record.
Only Santiago Canizares (Valencia in 2000-01) and Keylor Navas (Real Madrid in 2015-16) have reached this number in a single campaign, meaning the African star is a member of an exclusive club.
In addition, he is the first African goalkeeper to play in the final of the competition since Bruce Grobbelaar in 1985.
The former Zimbabwe international was also in goal for Liverpool a year earlier when Liverpool beat AS Roma to win the European Cup in 1984.