Where is the real Petr Cech?

In the history of the Premier League, no goalkeeper has had more clean sheets than legendary shotstopper, Petr Cech. The 35-year-old goal custodian is on 199 clean sheets, and is just a shutout from reaching a milestone 200. Cech is still relatively young for a goalkeeper, but his performances this season has led to calls as to whether he still has what it takes to be in goal for a top level side in the division.

At Chelsea, he was the best in the Premier League, continuously making save after save with remarkable reflexes. In 2012, he was instrumental in helping The Blues win the Champions League, after registering unforgettable performances in the semifinals and finals of the competition. Ahead of the 2014/2015 season, he was dislodged as Chelsea number 1 by Thibaut Courtois, who was returning to Stamford Bridge following his loan spell at Atletico Madrid. Cech became the fastest  safe hands to reach 100 clean sheets, doing so in just 180 games and was the starter when Chelsea conceded a miserly 15 goals enroute winning the Premier League in 04/05.

He left Chelsea in 2015 with another league title in the bag, and many couldn’t begrudge him the chance to leave the club and sign for Arsenal, with his preferred wish to stay in London because of his family. In the game away at Swansea, he made a shocking error that allowed Sam Clucas to score. At some point in a player’s career, he starts declining and the fact that Arsenal have conceded 34 goals already this campaign shows a lot about how low the levels the 6ft 5in goalkeeper have dropped.

Cech in his pomp was among the best, and while he is still the same man, he has looked a shadow of his former self, and needs to find the inner joy to get back to the heights he reached previously.


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