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Chelsea new boys Kepa and Mateo Kovacic train with team-mates ahead of big kick-off at Huddersfield


Chelsea new boys Kepa and Mateo Kovacic train with team-mates ahead of big kick-off at Huddersfield


Chelsea geared up for the start of the 2018-19 season in training on Thursday, and were joined by new signings Kepa and Mateo Kovacic for the first time.

The Blues smashed the world record move for a goalkeeper when they bought Kepa from Athletic Bilbao this week, and added midfielder Kovacic on loan.

Maurizio Sarri's side get underway on Saturday at Huddersfield, and look set to throw their two new players straight into the limelight.

Kovacic may still have to wait for his chance to shine, having only recently returned from his post-World Cup break after Croatia's run to the final in Russia.

But Kepa is sure to start in between the sticks after the sale of Thibaut Courtois to Real Madrid.

His arrival has seen the record move for a goalkeeper smashed twice in three weeks following Liverpool's £65m capture of Alisson from Roma last month.

And the Spaniard believes the true value of No 1s is finally being recognised.

It's a way to value the goalkeepers,' Kepa said at Stamford Bridge on Thursday.

'It's great that big fees are paid for strikers and other players, but why not for goalkeepers? It's a good way to acknowledge a good goalkeeper.

'The transfer market has gone up in price a lot in the last few years. It has to do with many different things, partly it is the contracts the clubs have with the media now.'

Kepa is hoping to distance himself from the figure by focusing on his performances.

'In terms of the price and me being the most expensive keeper in the world, it's something I don't think about,' he said.

I just think about myself, be the same I've always been and try to give my best to the club.

'I don't really think about the price, it's not something that's in my mind. Chelsea has made a great bet in taking me in.

Kovacic, who struggled for consistent opportunities at the Bernabeu, is looking forward to proving himself in a new country.

The 24-year-said: 'I am really happy and excited to be here at Chelsea. It is an amazing feeling. I will try to do my best for this club.

'It is a new league for me, the beginning is always tough but I am sure the coach and my new team-mates will help me and I am looking forward to a great season.'

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