Tuchel: We had a plan for Kepa all along

English Premier League

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has revealed the reasoning behind his goalkeeper substitution in the last minute of extra-time against Villarreal in the UEFA Super Cup on Wednesday night.

In the dying moments of the Super Cup clash and with the score 1-1, the German tactician made the decision to swap his goalkeepers, bringing on Kepa Arrizabalaga for Edouard Mendy, in preparation for the penalty shootout that followed. 

Read: Chelsea clinch second Super Cup title

This change proved a success as the Spanish shot-stopper led his side to victory in their 6-5 shootout win by saving the Yellow Submarine's second attempt from the spot with his first meaningful touch, and then Raul Albiol's decisive kick too.

Tuchel later revealed in a post-match interview that the substitution was not spontaneous decision.

Scroll through the gallery above to see Chelsea players celebrating their Super Cup triumph

"We talked about it with the goalkeepers when we [Tuchel and his coaching team] came and had the first cup game against Barnsley," he told BT Sport.

"So we had some statistics, we were well prepared, [knowing] that Kepa is the best percentage at saving penalties.

"The analysing guys, the goalkeeping coaches showed me, introduced me to the data and then we spoke with the players that this can happen when we play in knockout games.

"It's fantastic Edou [Mendy] accepts it. He puts his ego to one side when we take this decision and he is aware why we do this, this is the key. He knows it's not a sudden idea of the manager.

"There is proof that Kepa is better in this discipline and these guys are team players. I'm happy for Kepa and Edou, to have a goalkeeper like this who is not too proud to step out of the field and happy to take this for the team."

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