Kepa Arrizabalaga was produced one of the best performers in his Chelsea shirt after inspired Thomas Tuchel’s men won the UEFA Super Cup with victory over Europa League winners Villarreal on penalties in Belfast on Wednesday evening.
The Spaniard, who has lost his place as number one shot-stopper since joining the club for a world record fee for a goalkeeper in 2018, was introduced late in extra-time as a substitute for the shootout by Thomas Tuchel.
However the 26-year-old rewarded his manager’s faith with two brilliant penalty shoot-out saves from Aissa Mandi and Raul Albiol.
Thomas Tuchel’s European champions took the lead through Hakim Ziyech brilliant finish in a first-half, however, Villarreal came on strong against weary legs and Gerard Moreno sent the game to extra time.
The Blues boss then, gambled and substituted Kepa Arrizabalaga on for Edouard Mendy ahead of the penalty shootout, and the Spaniard made two saves to end Chelsea’ Super Cup hoodoo and win the trophy in Northern Ireland.