Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel says if he had the option to sign any club legend for his team he would pick former goalkeeper and current technical advisor Petr Cech.
The Czech Republican is widely considered the greatest Premier League goalkeeper in the competition’s history alongside the likes of Peter Schmeichel, Edwin Van Der Sar and David Seaman.
For Chelsea, Cech made just shy of 500 appearances during an 11-year stint at Stamford Bridge, winning four Premier League titles in that time and the 2012 Champions League, in which he saved a penalty against Bayern Munich in extra time and two in the penalty shootout triumph.
Having left for Arsenal in 2015 following the rise of Thibaut Courtois, the 39-year-old hung up his gloves two seasons ago and returned back across the M25 to take on a technical advisory role for the west Londoners, where he also functions as an emergency goalkeeper.
Such has been Cech’s impact in the capital that Tuchel has picked him ahead of Chelsea immortals Frank Lampard, John Terry and Didier Drogba as the one player he would bring back if he could have a legend in his team.
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When asked by Chelsea’s official website to select a club legend he would have in his side, Tuchel replied: “Tough question!
“I work every day with Petr Cech and he’s great to have around, so I’ll choose Petr with all of his experience.
“He works here as a Technical Advisor but he also helps out sometimes with our goalkeepers and I think it would have been fun to have coached him as a player.
“I watched a documentary about him and Didier Drogba recently and both of them had such fantastic winning mentalities when they were playing, so focused and dedicated and for sure, they would be an asset to any team.”
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Petr Cech’s Chelsea career
Having signed from Rennes in 2004 for £7m, Cech quickly established himself as Jose Mourinho’s trusted No. 1 between the sticks, supplanting Carlo Cudicini and famously marking his maiden campaign by conceding just 15 times in the Premier League as the club sealed the title.
His debut season still stands as the best defensive record in Premier League history, with the club also only losing once as they cantered to English dominance. Incredibly, Cech kept 24 cleans sheets, the most by a goalkeeper in a single Premier League season as he took home the inaugural Golden Glove.
Along with his collection of league titles and that Champions League medal, Cech also has four FA Cups to his name, three League Cups and the Europa League, as well as a host of individual accolades, including Chelsea’s Player of the Year in 2010/11 and two appearances in the PFA Team of the Year.
More recently Cech made his debut in the PL2 for Chelsea U23s in December while he also turned out for ice hockey team Guildford Phoenix between 2019 and 2020, and of course, he hit headlines in April after he approached Chelsea fans during the European Super League protests outside Stamford Bridge.
His career is a long and storied one, and it continues behind the scenes for Chelsea.