Maurizio Sarri speaks out on Thibaut Courtois behaviour before Real Madrid move

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Thibaut Courtois kissed Real Madrids badge at his Bernabeu unveiling (Picture: Getty)

Maurizio Sarri believes personal reasons were behind Thibaut Courtois decision to force through a transfer move to Real Madrid.

Courtois was heavily linked with the La Liga giants all summer and went on strike in the lead-up to the 2018/19 campaign, meaning Chelsea had to find a replacement for the 26-year-old goalkeeper.

The Blues subsequently signed Kepa Arrizabalaga, 23, from Athletic Bilbao for a world-record £71.6million fee, and Courtois got his wish as Madrid reached an agreement for the Belgian.

Courtois two Madrid-based children were a major factor behind him pushing for a move to the Spanish capital and Sarri refused to blame the shot-stopper for going AWOL towards the end of the transfer window.

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Asked about Courtois behaviour, Sarri responded: I dont know. I think there were some personal reasons, so I cannot go on personal reasons.

[Eden] Hazard is with us. It is not a problem, I have spoken with his three or four times. He never said anything about the market. He is happy to stay here.

Maurizio Sarri quickly replaced Thibaut Courtois at Stamford Bridge (Picture: Getty)

Kepa has a tough task in replacing Courtois at Stamford Bridge and Sarri urged supporters to be patient with the young Spaniard.

Asked if Kepa can be as good as Courtois, Sarri replied: Not at the moment for sure, but he is very young. He is 23.

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I hope he can improve very fast. But for the moment he is not Courtois, of course.

[Mateo] Kovacic is a very technical player, play between the lines of the opponent and I think for us it could be very important.

MORE: Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri fires warning to Real Madrid over Eden Hazard transfer

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