Chelsea fans, get ready to bid farewell to Petr Cech, as the legendary goalkeeper is all set to leave Stamford Bridge after 11 years. A £6million signing from Rennes in July 2004, Cech has enjoyed plenty of success at Chelsea. Before this season, the Czech Republic goalkeeper was a constant element in all of his time at the club. He has won four Premier League titles, the Champions League and the Europa League among several other accolades while at Chelsea. He has literally given his sweat, tears and blood for the club (case in point: the injury against Reading in 2006). It will indeed be an emotional move from the Blues for the 33 year old goal-keeper.
Courtois has been first choice this season and seeing him save goals, predictions can be made stating that Chelsea’s goal will be in capable and reliable hands for years to come. But despite all his skills and attributes, it will be interesting see how the youngster lives up to the standards set by Cech.
Despite his minimal starts this season, Cech has not let any excuse affect his form. In his 6 league starts this season, he has maintained 4 clean sheets, and except for that utterly disappointing performance in the FA Cup where he was unable to save 4 goals by Bradford, the Blues have never found any reason for complaint.
Of late, it has become a rare sight to see players stick to their clubs through thick and thin. For example, David De Gea after a few seasons with Manchester United will expectedly move to Real Madrid, Raheem Sterling is looking to move out of Liverpool and even Paul Pogba is expected to move this summer, despite Juventus’ performances at the Champions League. Hence, players like Cech are greatly appreciated even more for their undying loyalty for the club through tough times and good times.
The all-time highest clean sheet record is held by David James, as far as the Premier League is concerned, and if Cech decides to remain in the EPL, he might just go on to break that record. However, Mourinho would probably not let Cech join a rival team, because that might just end up being a huge gamble. One of the most positive things about the stellar goal-keeper is his attitude both on and off the field. Despite receiving second preference over Courtois this season, Cech did not let that affect his temperament. Instead, he actually helped the young player fit in. That just speaks volumes about the kind of amazing human being that he is. This fact was further exemplified by Mourinho. “His attitude is amazing. Before the game he told the captain (John Terry) to choose a certain end if he won the toss because at 1:30pm it would be better to play in a certain goal because of the sun. And he was not playing, he was thinking of Courtois. With this attitude Petr deserves everything,” Mourinho said prior to the game against QPR.
The player has personally expressed his desire to either join Arsenal or Manchester United. He has also received offers from Paris Saint Germain and Real Madrid. Mourinho has also expressed his reluctance to let Cech join a rival Premier League team. However, Chelsea will look to take the player’s opinion into consideration as to whether he should leave or remain.
With David De Gea wanting to move out of Manchester United, it is no surprise that Louis Van Gaal is keeping an eye out for Petr Cech. Also in the race to don the United goal keeper’s jersey, is Hugh Lloris. Paul Scholes has mentioned that Cech’s Premier League experience will prove to be vital. On the other hand, he has also spoken about how De Gea should remain at Manchester United because he has the potential to go on to become one of the all-time greats of the club.
He has done everything he could for Chelsea and more and he deserves to receive a tribute worthy of his accomplishments as he played his last game for the Blues with Sunderland, which was also the last league game for the club this season. A great personality on field and off it, Petr Cech is undeniably one of the modern day legends at the EPL.