Kepa Arrizabalaga became the biggest talking point of the Carabao Cup final when he refused to leave the pitch after Maurizio Sarri planned a substitution.
The Chelsea goalkeeper was hampered by cramp and Willy Caballero was being readied to come on.
But Kepa gestured to the bench that he was fine to continue and he refused to depart.
Sarri appeared to be infuriated by Kepa’s behaviour but he backed down at full-time, insisting it was just a misunderstanding.
And the Spaniard said he didn’t mean to undermine his manager in a statement on social media.
“At no time has it been my intention to disobey the coach or any of his intentions,” Kepa wrote.
“The coach thought I was not in a position to play on and my intention was to express that I was in good condition to continue helping the team.”
Fan snubs Kepa Arrizabalaga
Kepa will now be considered a villain by many Chelsea supporters and one made his feelings clear after the defeat at Wembley Stadium.
A fan held out his hand to shake the hands of every Chelsea player – except when he saw Kepa, pulling his hand back and snubbing the ‘keeper.
If that’s any indication of how Chelsea supporters feel about Kepa, he’s in for a rough few months.
Many are calling for Chelsea to discipline the ‘keeper, perhaps by dropping him or handing him a fine, but it seems the punishment won’t be that severe if Sarri considers it to have been a misunderstanding.
“It was only a big misunderstanding,” the Italian said, per The Guardian.
“Kepa was right, but in the wrong way – wrong in the way he conducted himself, but mentally he was right because he was able to go to penalties.
“He was right for his motivation, but not for the conduct.”