Chelsea’s Petr Cech is considered to be one of the best goalkeepers in the world but the Czech footballer will have to perform better than ever in order to retain his spot in the starting lineup of Jose Mourinho as Thibaut Courtois has already made his return to Stamford Bridge after enjoying a sublime loan season with the Spanish club Athletic Madrid.
Along with Diego Costa, Courtois was another performer who played a huge role in the title winning season that Athletic Madrid enjoyed during the previous season.
The father of the Belgian shot stopper Thibaut Courtois has clearly said that his son is not ready to be second in the pecking order at Chelsea. So, before having him, the Blues management will have to make a decision on the future of their first choice goalie Petr Cech.
Courtois had made a move to Stamford Bridge in July 2011 after leaving Genk, but, in the last 3 years, he hasn’t played a single match for Chelsea. He had been loaned out to the Spanish club Atletico Madrid immediately after his arrival and since then, he has been there only. He has already made close to 100 league appearances for Atletico and is currently their no. 1 goalkeeper.
Two of the experienced Chelsea players, Branislav Ivanovic and Frank Lampard, will not be seen in action for the next 4 weeks or so. Both of them had got injured during the match against Liverpool last year.
Jose Mourinho, the man in charge at Chelsea, said that after his team’s victory against Southampton FC on the first day of 2014.
Ivanovic had made his way out of the ground in the earlier stages of the game against the Reds after suffering a knee blow, while, Lampard had done a bit of damage to his leg muscles just moments before the half time break and hadn’t gone onto the pitch in the second half.
In football, we often see that the achievements of a defender or a goalkeeper go unnoticed, while, the achievements of an attacking player get discussed widely. The same happened with Petr Cech a few days ago.
Playing for Chelsea against Southampton, the 31 years old Czechoslovakian kept a clean sheet. It was the 208th time that he had done so playing for the Blues and with that, he got levelled with Peter Bonetti who is considered as one of the greatest Chelsea goalies so far.
That was certainly a huge achievement for Cech, but, surprisingly, it didn’t get talked about as much as it should have.
Cech should be given a lot of credit not just because of the fact that he has equalled the record of Bonetti, but, because of the no. of matches that he has taken to do so. He has taken 272 matches lesser and that is something which is admirable.
Cech has been a part of Chelsea since the last 9 years or so and he has made 450 appearances for them so far.
Talking to the reporters yesterday about getting equalized with Bonetti in terms of the no. of clean sheets, Cech said, “Peter is one of the club’s all time greats. So, it’s really a huge thing for me to get levelled with him. I have had the opportunity of meeting him a few times in the past and I must say he is a fantastic human being.”
Meanwhile, Cech might be breaking one more record in a few months’ time i.e. the record of keeping the most no. of clean sheets in the Premier League. Currently, the holder of that magnificent record is David James, but, Cech is not too far away from him.
Chelsea shot stopper Petr Cech has handed a huge vote of confidence to star striker Fernando Torres, stating that he believes the striker is slowly but surely getting his old form back and he will be a menace to opposition defenses once the season progresses.
The Czech Republic skipper hailed the recent exploits of the Spanish international striker who scored two goals in their last UEFA Champions League encounter against Schalke 04 of Germany as well as the winner in a gripping encounter against Premier League rivals Manchester City at home last weekend.
Many people have criticized Torres over the last few seasons after his move to the Blues and he has himself struggled on occasion to justify the huge transfer fee the club paid to Liverpool for his services but Petr Cech feels the debate has gone on for a bit too long now.
He stated that there have been many games in the past where Torres had been fantastic but just because he is a striker and didn’t get on the score sheet, people would take to criticizing him and that has been unfair on the player as well.
But now, Cech feels the critics will shut up with Torres not only leading the Chelsea line, but he is also creating and scoring goals and it is clear he is enjoying his time. Petr Cech and Torres were both left out of Chelsea’s Capital One Cup success against Arsenal last night but the big goalkeeper feels that Torres will improve as the season goes on and so will the team.
He stated that he is feeling a lot of confidence with the way the team has been playing and the way they have adapted to the new system and hopes for major trophies at the end of the season.
Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech has backed the club’s pursuit of Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney but believes that the club will compete for all the major titles this season even if they fail to land the England international from Old Trafford.
The Czech international goalkeeper joined the West London side in 2004, around the same time Jose Mourinho came to Stamford Bridge and according to the club’s legendary goalkeeper, Wayne Rooney is a brilliant player but at this moment, he is a player for Manchester United and it is not right to speak about him, but he mentioned they will have to wait and see what happens by the end of the transfer window.
Chelsea have already had two bids rejected for the player, the first one around £ 20 million and the second one reported to be around £ 25 million with a further £ 5 million in add-ons and bonuses with the Manchester giants holding firm on their stance that the player is not for sale at any price. But Petr Cech insists that if the player does join the team, he will add another dimension to the attacking aspect of the Blues’ attack but he is also certain that the team they have at the moment is good enough to tear apart any opposition that comes in front of them.
The Czech international captain is also thrilled at the return of former boss Jose Mourinho to the club and added that the Portuguese and Chelsea are a match made in heaven, adding that they already achieved so much during his first reign in charge at the club but Petr Cech hopes for a lot more this time around and has targeted winning the UEFA Champions League once again under the returning Mourinho, who has claimed to be the Happy One after his return.
Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech has stated that the returning Jose Mourinho will only consider his first season back at Stamford Bridge a success if he wins a trophy and finishes in the top two of the Premier League.
The Portuguese player is nurturing the egos and boosting the self confidence of the players in their tour of the Far East for pre-season and the Czech international has stated that there is absolutely no fear of failure among the players.
Cech stated that if there is fear among players, then it is not worth coming back and one might as well as stay on holiday. He admitted that it is a waste of time and energy adding that there is nothing to fear and if they fail, they will and there is nothing to do except come back stronger in the following season.
Petr Cech admitted that all the players are confident and they are willing to have a go at all the major prizes this season and if they fail, they will fail because failure is a part of football and life as well. However, he admitted that ultimately the team needs to win something if they want to progress from last season for this season to be termed a success.
He mentioned that progression means doing better than last season, first and foremost in the Premier League and in the UEFA Champions League as well because they got knocked out too early in the competition and that is not ideal for a team of their caliber.
The Chelsea number stated that there is great balance in the team with a mixture of youth and experience in the players and Petr Cech is hopeful that the bunch of players Chelsea have this season should do well enough in all competitions.
Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech has been regarded as one of the best in the world. He has been responsible for Chelsea keeping their challenge for the top four positions intact going into the final few matches of the Premier league. The team face a difficult run of fixtures in the next few days. They will be playing against the likes of Southampton, Manchester United, Rubin Kazan, and Sunderland in the space of four days. Chelsea manager Rafa Benitez has acknowledged that finishing in the top four remains a priority.
Despite this, he is expected to rest a few players for the trip to Southampton during the weekend. Goalkeeper Petr Cech has said that the team should not be taking their opposition lightly despite the fact that the manager may bring in squad players for the match. He said that the arrival of the new manager Pochettino has made them defensively solid, and he expects them to put on a solid performance against the European champions.
Chelsea have already faced Southampton numerous times this season. They have managed to come out successful from his encounters, while the recent 5-1 victory in the FA Cup showed their class over the relegation threatened opponents. Cech, though, expects a difficult match at the St Marys this time around.
"In football, everything is different - you can have a first half that is completely different from the second half. In the away game against Southampton we were very effective, taking our chances, and then at home we had a very good half - but the last half an hour of the game we allowed them to come back into it. You cannot do that in the Premier League. They changed manager with Pochettino and they are more attacking, more organised with very good pressing which makes them more aggressive," said Cech.
The fitness of the two vital players has become a matter of concern for the Chelsea team management before their all important Premier League match against Wigan Athletic which is going to be played at Stamford Bridge on 9th of February.
Demba Ba and Petr Cech suffered injuries in Chelsea’s last match against Newcastle United.
Chelsea lost that match by 2-3.
Demba Ba suffered a serious nose injury after being collided with Fabricio Coloccini. That was a nasty collision and Ba was in a lot of pain while coming out of the ground. It seems to be unlikely that he will be able to get fit for the match against Wigan.
On the other hand, Cech injured his finger while trying to make a save in the first half of that match. According to the medical reports, his finger has fractured and because of that injury, he will not be able to play for Czech Republic in the friendly match against Turkey.
Cech is expected to take part in the training session on Wednesday and on the basis of how he will feel while training, the decision will be taken about his participation in the match against Wigan.
Talking to the reports about his injury, Cech said, “I was trying to punch the ball and in doing that, I had a slight collision with a Newcastle player. I didn’t feel that much pain in my finger at that time. But, after the match, I was sent for X-ray on a precautionary basis and the X-ray reports showed that the finger had fractured.”
“I will train tomorrow and then, let’s see what happens. If I will feel that the finger is troubling me and I will not be able to give my 100%, I will definitely withdraw myself from the match.”
Petr Cech will not be able to play for Chelsea for the next three weeks because of a groin injury that he had discovered while playing in the match against Everton. Cech had not gone on to the field in the second half of that match. He also didn’t feature in Chelsea’s previous match Queens Park Rangers which the Blues lost by 1-0.
Talking to the reporters after Chelsea’s defeat against QPR, the manager of Chelsea Rafa Benitez said, “We will not get the services of Cech in the next few matches as he has injured his groin and according to the doctors, he needs to rest for at least three weeks to get fit.
“He is our first choice goalkeeper and he has been in decent form in this season so far. So, we are definitely going to miss him in the upcoming games. But, we have got a back up goalkeeper in the form of Ross Turnbull who did quite well in this match. In the absence of Cech, he has got a great opportunity to show what he is capable of. He needs to grab this opportunity.”
When asked about the performance of the team in the match against Everton, Rafa said, “To be honest, it was a disappointing performance as we lost quite a few opportunities. Had we latched on those chances, the result of the match would have been different. The next few games are pretty important for us and we can’t afford to make such kind of mistakes in the upcoming matches.”
“We had done remarkably well in the last four games and we had come into this match with a lot of confidence. All we needed to do was to keep our cool and to do the basics right. But, we tried to be over aggressive at times which proved to be costly for us.”