Athletic Club Reportedly Hoping To Raise Kepa Arrizabalaga’s Release Clause
Fans of Athletic Club have been well aware of Kepa Arrizabalaga’s quality for some time now. The rest of the world is just starting to take notice. On Wednesday night the 23-year-old introduced himself to the masses with a world class display against Real Madrid that saw him make nine saves and leave the Santiago Bernabeu in silence. Real Madrid fans were left wondering what could have been if they had signed the keeper back in January, while Athletic fans smiled knowing that the Lezama product had devoted his future to his boyhood club.
Real Madrid had been chasing the 23-year-old for roughly a year and it looked like they were going to complete the signing in January even though his contract was set to expire at the end of the season. In the end, Kepa decided to reject Real Madrid’s offer in favor of staying at his boyhood club. He signed an extension through 2025 which also saw his release clause rise from €30 million to €80 million. The keeper said that he made the best decision for his present and future and that he was excited to play out his entire contract at the San Mamés, but there is worry about the future.
Wednesday night’s performance proved once again that even a fee of €80 million would be a bargain for a player of Kepa’s quality. In fact, Iñaki Ugalde of Mundo Deportivo has now reported that Athletic Club are hoping to raise Kepa’s release clause again even though he just signed a new deal a few months ago. This same situation happened multiple times with Aymeric Laporte so it isn’t anything new. However, if the club is going to improve the goalkeeper’s deal so quickly they will also likely have to increase his wages as well, which most fans would have no problems with at this point.
The report went on to claim that there are speculations that another European giant may be interested in the 23-year-old and that paying his €80 million release clause would not be a problem. If that is the case Kepa may once again have to make a huge decision about his career and future. Since signing his new contract in January he has been very vocal about his desire to succeed at Athletic and that he agreed to a contract until 2025 to show his commitment. Regardless, the keeper has proven that he is one of the best in the world and clubs are not going to stop their pursuit of such a young and talented player.