Edouard Mendy admits he is “proud” and carries a “responsibility” as the Premier League’s only African goalkeeper.
And Mendy is embracing his status and hopes to pave the way for more African goalkeepers to receive opportunities.
“There are lots of African players in the Premier League, it’s the best league in the world, which is a positive thing, but there have only been a few African goalkeepers,” says Mendy.
“Whether I feel a particular pressure with that? Not really, it’s a source of pride to be an African goalkeeper in the Premier League.
“It’s up to me to show as an African goalkeeper I can really perform at this level and perhaps change people’s mentalities on these things.”
Mendy admits he is unsure why there are so few African goalkeepers in the Premier League’s history, but admits there will be “expectations” surrounding his role.
“I can’t tell you why there are so few African goalkeepers in England, when you look at other leagues, there are more, in France there are four or five at least, perhaps it’s something that can be explained in different ways,” Mendy added.
"Whether the profile of the player isn’t right, or whether the coach has other ideas of players he’s looking for. Right now it’s true that I’m the only African goalkeeper in the Premier League, so it’s a responsibility.
“I believe there are expectations surrounding that, I just need to make sure I’m working hard and doing my best in training and in matches, so other goalkeepers can follow me into this league and have that opportunity.”