Petr Cech Makes 100th Champions League Appearance


Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

In today’s Champions League match between Chelsea FC and Galatasaray, Chelsea’s stalwart goalkeeper Petr Cech made his 100th Champions League appearance for the club. The fact was probably lost on many Chelsea supporters amid the news of striker Didier Drogba’s return to his old stomping grounds but it is a significant achievement for Cech. The Czech keeper has been a giant for Chelsea especially in the Champions League as he has been a constant figure for the Blues in their European campaigns since he arrived at Stamford Bridge from Stade Rennes for only £7 million. Not bad for a keeper many would place in the top five in the world at his position.

Amid the plaudits and outpouring of love for Drogba was the reminder that Cech was every bit as instrumental to the club’s European and domestic successes for the past decade. Most notably of course for his performance in the 2012 Champions League final where he saved Arjen Robben’s penalty in extra time as well as denying Ivica Olic and Bastian Schweinsteiger in the shootout. It was also incredibly fitting that the first man Drogba hugged when he scored that historic penalty was Petr Cech as they both had risen to the occasion for the Blues.

The best part of today’s performance for Petr Cech, 100th appearance and all, is that it came in a Chelsea victory and a clean sheet. Despite the memorable nature of the appearance, Cech had little to do today and was only asked to make one save in the entire match. So the clean sheet was more of a recognition of the defense but Cech will take the statistic to add to his record tally and the plaudits that come along with it.

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