Mark Schwarzer has compared Edouard Mendy to Petr Cech after the Senegal international made it four clean sheets in as many appearances for Chelsea.
The Australian, who spent two seasons at Stamford Bridge as understudy to Chelsea icon Cech, believes Mendy has been central in restoring confidence in the Blues back four, in double-quick time.
Having kept out Crystal Palace in his debut, the summer signing from Rennes has followed that up with successive clean sheets against Sevilla, Manchester United and last night at Kransnador.
“They’ve found their Cech haven’t they?,” he said on Sky Sports News.
“The amount of clean sheets he’s kept since his debut in the Premier League has been impressive.
“Mendy exudes confidence and obviously a lot of self-belief, but not only that he’s backing that up with performance.
“I thought the Manchester United game was a huge turning point, a pivotal moment for him because you could see him grow in confidence from that game.
“One thing is knowing what you can do and then delivering it on another stage. Now he’s on one of the biggest
stages, the pressure’s on and he was able to deliver at Old Trafford in a game that Chelsea found themselves on the back foot quite a lot.”
Schwarzer believes Mendy’s instant impact has made it easier for Frank Lampard to rotate his defence.
“He exudes confidence and that then moves across the whole team, and I think what was interesting last night
as well, it was the first time they’ve kept a clean sheet since Mendy has been in goal without Thiago Silva in the back three.
“When you’re going through a run of games where you’re not keeping clean sheets as Chelsea did, you need
to find a partnership that’s going to grind out a couple of results and Chelsea did that.
“Thiago Silva, Zouma, Mendy in goal, and I think Ben Chilwell, who has been a great signing for them, and
that combination whether it’s Reece James playing at right-back or it’s (Cesar) Azpilicueta coming in, I think the stability that it’s brought off the back of clean sheets is important.
“Now when you are struggling, yes you want stability, but now confidence has started to grow a little bit
– because that confidence grows among the team – you can make those changes, and with Chelsea you saw that last night.”