Willy Caballero is Chelsea’s number 2 goalkeeper and he is pretty hold. Older than most premier league Goalkeeper.
At the age of 39, the Argentine who is a veteran in the game is aging but his experience between the sticks can’t be swept away.
The 6 ft 1, was born in Santa Elena, Argentina has made his mark with several teams. He played a bit par role in Manchester City before joining Chelsea.
He is currently being considered by Frank Lampard ahead of Kepa Arizzabalaga in the pecking order. But with the signing of Edouard Mendy from Rennes, that might change soon.
Willy Caballero’s journey to Chelsea
The veteran goalkeeper joined Chelsea on 1 July 2017 as a free agent from Manchester City. Chelsea brought him as an experienced hand that can add strength to their goalkeeping resources following the departure of Asmir Begovic to Bournemouth.
Having spent three years as Manchester City number two, he has competed with Arrizabalaga for the number one spot in recent times.
His career began at Boca Juniors in his home country, then later moved to Europe to link up with Spanish clubs Elche and Malaga.
Caballero’s Chelsea debut came in September in a 5-1 Carabao Cup game win at home to Nottingham Forest. He couldn’t get a debut clean sheet as Forest scored right at the end of the game.
He then made further appearances in subsequent wins in the competition against Premier League Everton and Bournemouth. His first Chelsea clean sheet came against Norwich in an FA Cup game that ended 0-0. He however conceded in the 90th-minute in the replay. The Argentine was one of the heroes of a penalty shoot-out win.
He made his Premier League debut for Chelsea in January, beginning with a clean sheet against Brighton. He made an outstanding save from a Tomer Hemed header in to record a clean sheet.
He also played an important role in the FA Cup semi-final against Southampton, making a great stop when the score was 1-0.
In the 2018/19, Caballero played nine games behind new first-choice Kepa Arrizabalaga. When he was called to duty, he kept a clean sheet in a crucial home win over Tottenham in February. He also appeared twice in Chelsea’s successful Europa League campaign.
Last season, Caballero was in between the sticks for the Blues in the early rounds of the domestic cup competitions under Lampard. He recorded a clean sheet against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup third round in January.
He then made five consecutive starts in February before the football lockdown. He further regained his starting spot after the restart, where he was involved in the crucial final-day win over Wolves and the FA Cup final. Chelsea handed him another one-year contract extension in May.
Before joining Chelsea, Caballero left Spain for Man City, in the summer of 2014, linking up once again with Manuel Pellegrini, whom he had played under at Malaga.
He helped City win the League Cup in 2016 in the penalty shootout. Caballero saved three penalties from Lucas, Philippe Coutinho, and Adam Lallana to help his team come out on top at Wembley.
He was also involved in the 2016/17 Champions League match win over Barcelona for the Citizens. He then made a crucial penalty save from former Chelsea striker Falcao in the first leg of their last-16 knockout tie against Monaco.
Caballero however suffered a 2-1 defeat with Man City against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League this season. He couldn’t stop Eden Hazard from scoring after initially saving his penalty. The rebound from the Belgian proved to be the winning goal.
After seven years at Elche, Caballero, who was the first choice at the club left for Malaga in 2011. He helped the club achieved a sixth-place finish under the guidance of Pellegrini in the 2012/13 season.
Caballero’s impressive form got him to be nominated for the league’s best goalkeeper award alongside Keylor Navas and his future Chelsea team-mate, Thibaut Courtois, who was on loan at Atletico Madrid.
Caballero’s international career
Apart from his success at the club level, Caballero is also successful at the international level.
The veteran was part of the Argentina team which won gold at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
He made his international debut for his country in March 2018 at the age of 36 in a 2-0 friendly win over Italy.
After keeping a clean sheet, he further recorded good performances via impressive saves, which earned him a spot in the Argentina squad for the 2018 World Cup. He started their opening two matches of the competition.
Willy Caballero salary
According to the available stats, the Argentine currently earns £1.2 million per annum. This is a reduction to the £2m he was earning initially afforded when joining the club as a free agent. He earns £35,000 weekly salary.
Willy Caballero and Lucia’s relationship
Caballero is married to Lucia. Their marriage which has been reportedly long has produced two beautiful kids, Aitana and Guillermina.
Guillermina was diagnosed with cancer but she is now cancer-free. The goalkeeper cherishes family moments and he likes to spend time with his girls.