Chelsea are facing the prospect of paying goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga to ‘sit on the bench’ as no clubs are willing to take him on.
The Spaniard, who arrived at Stamford Bridge for a record £72m fee last summer, has been dropped for the last two Blues games after errors against Liverpool.
It has seen the 25-year-old get linked with a loan move away from the club amid the arrival of French shot-stopper Edouard Mendy.
But The Sun have reported that this could be harder than Frank Lampard expected in the current climate.
Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia was asking for £60m to take Kepa on a permanent basis but the impact of Covid-19 has seen several clubs balk at the fee.
As the London side looked for loan deals, the impact has even seen protectives loan clubs unwilling to meet his £150,000-a-week wages.
With days until the end of the summer transfer window on October 5, it means the Blues will have to consider a deal where they pay at least half of his wages.
But even interest in this deal is now “limited”, according to the report, meaning Lampard’s side could be stuck with the Spaniard’s wage bill of £5m – just for him to sit on the bench.
Where will Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizablaga be by Transfer Deadline Day? Have your say here.
Despite criticism of the shot-stopper, Lampard has slammed the comments on Kepa as “unfair”.
“I certainly won’t go to the point of saying Kepa has played his last game for Chelsea,” said the Blues boss.
“We have to also understand Kepa is a young man. A lot of the spotlight on him has become unfair. I have to protect him because I know he’s a good lad trying to do his best.”
The Blues have suffered a poor start to the season, winning just two of their first five games in all competitions.
After spending £200m in the transfer window, they sit ninth in the Premier League while they were knocked out of the Carabao Cup by rivals Tottenham.