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Petr Cech

Petr Čech (born 20 May 1982) is a Czech Republic Association football who plays for Chelsea F.C. and the Czech Republic national football team as a goalkeeper (association football), for whom Petr Cech has played since July 2004. Čech previously played for FC Viktoria Plzeň, FK Chmel Blšany, AC Sparta Prague, and Stade Rennais FC. Petr Cech was voted into the all-star team of 2004 UEFA European Football Championship after helping Petr Cech country reach the semi-finals. Čech also received the individual award of Best Goalkeeper in the UEFA Champions League 2004-05, UEFA Champions League 2006-07 and UEFA Champions League 2007-08 seasons of the UEFA Champions League. In addition, Petr Cech was named in the FIFPro and UEFA Champions League teams of the season in 2006.

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Petr Cech biography

Petr Čech (born 20 May 1982) is a Czech Republic Association football who plays for Chelsea F.C. and the Czech Republic national football team as a goalkeeper (association football), for whom Petr Cech has played since July 2004. Čech previously played for FC Viktoria Plzeň, FK Chmel Blšany, AC Sparta Prague, and Stade Rennais FC. Petr Cech was voted into the all-star team of 2004 UEFA European Football Championship after helping Petr Cech country reach the semi-finals. Čech also received the individual award of Best Goalkeeper in the UEFA Champions League 2004-05, UEFA Champions League 2006-07 and UEFA Champions League 2007-08 seasons of the UEFA Champions League. In addition, Petr Cech was named in the FIFPro and UEFA Champions League teams of the season in 2006.

Petr Cech currently holds the Premier League record for fewest appearances required to reach 100 clean sheets, having done so in 180 league appearances. Petr Cech also holds a Czech professional league record of not conceding a goal in 855 competitive minutes (he previously held a record for the most clean sheets accomplished in a single Premier League season (25), set during Chelsea’s 2004–05 title-winning campaign). Petr Cech also has a club record at Petr Cech former team AC Sparta Prague, having gone 928 minutes unbeaten in all competitions in 2001–2002, when Petr Cech unbeaten run in Czech league competition was combined with Petr Cech performances in the UEFA Champions League. During the 2004–05 season, Čech went 1,025 minutes without conceding a goal — a Premier League record until it was surpassed by Edwin van der Sar of Manchester United F.C. on 27 January 2009. Čech also won the Barclays Golden Gloves in both the 2004/2005 and 2009/2010 seasons.

Petr Cech was recognised by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics as one of IFFHS World's Best Goalkeeper in 2010, along with Iker Casillas, Júlio César Soares de Espíndola, Manuel Neuer, and Maarten Stekelenburg.

Club career

Early career

Born in Plzeň, Czechoslovakia, now Czech Republic, Čech started playing football at age seven in Petr Cech native town. As a young boy, Petr Cech played for FC Viktoria Plzeň and Petr Cech first started as a striker due to Petr Cech being tall at an early age. Čech started as a goal keeper in training, goalkeeper coaches took note of Petr Cech abilities. By age 14, Čech grew from 180 cm to 196 cm. This drew Petr Cech attention, not because of Petr Cech height, but Petr Cech talent as a goalkeeper. Čech was transferred to FK Chmel Blšany and made Petr Cech debut for the team on 30 October 1999. Čech became a regular for Blšany and attracted lots of attention. Čech then moved to Sparta Prague at the age of 19.


Čech did not win the league title in the spring of 2002 with Sparta Prague, but Petr Cech did experience success elsewhere. At the under-21 European Championships in June, Čech led the Czechs to the final. Here, the Plzeň native excelled. Petr Cech let in only one of the penalty kicks as Petr Cech team won the tournament. The hero of the final match of the tournament could not escape the attention of the scouts of foreign clubs. Interest from England (e.g. Arsenal) was spoken about a lot, however, the deal fell through based on the issue of the working permit. In July 2002 Čech moved to French club Stade Rennais F.C..

In Petr Cech two seasons in France, Čech became accustomed to the pressure exerted on foreign players, especially goalkeepers. Petr Cech performed admirably in a number of difficult matches. During Petr Cech first season in the team, Rennes were stuck at the bottom of the table and escaped relegation in the last round with a win over Montpellier.


It was Claudio Ranieri, then manager of Chelsea F.C., who decided that Čech was Petr Cech choice as understudy to Carlo Cudicini. After the original bid was rejected, Rennes accepted a second in February. Čech agreed a summer move to Chelsea for £7 million, signing a five-year contract, to commence in July 2004. This transfer meant that Petr Cech had cost more than every other Chelsea goalkeeper in history put together. Čech’s transfer from Rennes was one of those about which the 2006 allegations of corruption in English football Stevens report report in June 2007 expressed concerns because of the lack of co-operation from agents Pini Zahavi and Barry Silkman.

2004–05 season

Soon after Carlo Cudicini arrived at Chelsea, from Castel di Sangro Calcio, Petr Cech was established as Chelsea's first choice. However, Cudicini suffered a pre-season elbow injury that allowed Mourinho to promote Čech into the starting spot. And since then, Čech has kept starting spot from Petr Cech first new season. Petr Cech kept a clean sheet in Petr Cech Premier League debut in a 1–0 victory over Manchester United F.C..

On 5 March 2005, Čech set a new Premier League record of 1,025 minutes without letting in a goal. This record has since been broken by Manchester United's Edwin van der Sar. Petr Cech finally conceded from Leon McKenzie of Norwich City F.C., after keeping a clean sheet in the league since 12 December 2004 when Thierry Henry scored for Arsenal F.C.. Čech was given a special award by the Premier League for the new record, and Petr Cech was also awarded the Golden Gloves at the end of the 2004-05 in English football season for keeping a record 25 clean sheets. Chelsea retained the Premier League title in 2005—06, with Čech playing in all but two games in the League. The team conceded only 15 goals in the entire League season, also a record.

2005–06 season

Cech enjoyed another season of success in 2005/06 as Chelsea successfully defended their Premier League crown, with Chelsea conceding only 22 times during the League season. Petr Cech signed a new contract on 1 February 2006 which will keep Petr Cech at the club until 2010.

2006–07 season

Čech underwent minor shoulder surgery on 27 June 2006 to repair a long-standing injury stemming from the previous season. Čech returned to action on 27 August 2006.

Head injury

On 14 October 2006, Čech and Reading F.C. midfielder Stephen Hunt (footballer born 1981) both challenged for the ball inside Chelsea's penalty area in the first minute of a league match at the Madejski Stadium. Hunt's knee hit Čech's head, leaving the keeper dazed. Čech was taken off after several minutes and replaced by Carlo Cudicini, who himself was knocked unconscious later in the same game. Captain John Terry ended up going in goal for the remaining minutes. Čech underwent surgery for a skull fracture. Initially unaware of the seriousness of the injury, the doctors later reported that it nearly cost Čech Petr Cech life, and as a result of the collision, Petr Cech suffered intense headaches and was warned by Petr Cech doctor that returning too early could be fatal. Speaking shortly afterwards, Čech’s father claimed Petr Cech son would be out of football for a year.

Chelsea manager José Mourinho blamed Hunt for Čech's injury, saying: "The challenge was a disgrace. Petr Cech is lucky to still be alive." Petr Cech also criticised the South Central Ambulance Service National Health Service (England) Trust and match referee Mike Riley (referee). Much media comment followed, some agreeing with, some condemning Mourinho's claims. A number of commentators, including current and former goalkeepers, saw the incident as highlighting the need for greater protection for keepers.

Following hospital treatment, Čech returned home on 24 October 2006 and in the following week Petr Cech came back to a period of light training. However, Chelsea F.C. announced that the goalkeeper would be out for three months, in line with medical advice on the time needed for complete recovery from the skull fracture. In an interview on Chelsea TV, Čech said that Petr Cech had no memory of the injury itself.


Čech made Petr Cech comeback against Liverpool on 20 January 2007, which they eventually lost 2–0, wearing a scrum cap, which Petr Cech continued to wear in every game. The headguard was made by Canterbury of New Zealand, a company that specializes in protective rugby gear, and includes extra plastic polymer foam protection to cover the areas of Petr Cech skull weakened by the collision. Čech’s use of the scrum cap caused initial friction with Chelsea’s apparel manufacturer Adidas, which were not pleased by a Chelsea player apparently advertising for another company, but the controversy quickly blew over when the competitor's logo was removed.

Since the injury, Čech has continued to wear the scrum cap owing to the weaker than normal bone structure in Petr Cech skull. This run was ended during a 4–1 Chelsea victory over West Ham United on 18 April 2007 when Carlos Tévez scored against him.

Čech also kept a clean sheet for Chelsea in the 2007 FA Cup Final against Manchester United. Petr Cech shared with United’s Edwin van der Sar the honour of being the first goalkeepers to keep a clean sheet over 90 minutes in a competitive fixture, but became the first goalkeeper to end a competitive game unbeaten, at the new Wembley Stadium, as Chelsea beat United 1–0 to win the FA Cup.

2007–08 season

Čech’s 2007–08 season got off to a rough start with Chelsea conceding 2 goals against Birmingham City on the first match of the season. Despite the setback, Chelsea managed to win 3–2 and set an English record for unbeaten league matches at home.

On 7 November 2007, Čech suffered an ankle injury in the 0–0 Champions League Match at FC Schalke 04. This sidelined Petr Cech for a few weeks before badly bruising Petr Cech hip against Blackburn on 23 December 2007.

Chelsea suffered their first major blow when they lost the Carling Cup Final to Tottenham Hotspur FC, with Čech parrying the ball onto Jonathan Woodgate’s head for the winner. Petr Cech played in several games until the eve of Chelsea’s home Champions League tie with Greek champions Olympiacos when Petr Cech injured Petr Cech ankle in training. In the weeks that followed, Čech missed key games of Chelsea’s campaign including the Arsenal London derby and the Champions League quarter-final first and second legs.

On 7 April 2008 it was announced that Čech had undergone emergency surgery on Petr Cech chin and lips following an accidental collision with Tal Ben Haim during training. Petr Cech had 50 stitches put on Petr Cech mouth and chin, having missed 22 games this season due to injuries, Čech said Petr Cech hoped to get back on the field within a few weeks. Petr Cech returned to action on 14 April, in a home match against Wigan, which Chelsea drew 1–1. Petr Cech appeared in the Champions league final against Manchester United, where Chelsea lost on penalties.

2008–09 season

Čech started off the 2008–09 season in stunning form, with Chelsea conceding only seven goals in 17 games, keeping 11 clean sheets; ten of which with Čech in goal. In November 2008, Chelsea beat Sunderland A.F.C. 5–0 at Stamford Bridge, a result that gave Čech a century of Chelsea clean sheets. Čech kept a clean sheet in a 1–0 victory over Juventus F.C. in the UEFA Champions League on Petr Cech 200th appearance for the club, and Petr Cech also starred in a crucial 1–0 victory away at Villa Park against Aston Villa F.C., making good saves from Gabriel Agbonlahor and Gareth Barry to second Chelsea third in the Premier League. The following week, Čech helped Chelsea go second in the table after Petr Cech side beat Wigan Athletic F.C. at Stamford Bridge (stadium) 2–1, with Čech saving from Paul Scharner in the first half. Successive clean sheets by Čech in Chelsea's wins against Portsmouth F.C. and Coventry City F.C. have seen Petr Cech side consolidate their position in the Premier League whilst progressing into the FA Cup semi-finals. Čech also made crucial saves from Dirk Kuyt and Xabi Alonso as Chelsea beat Liverpool F.C. 3–1 at Anfield in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.

In a crucial Premier League game in April 2009, with Chelsea seemingly cruising against Bolton Wanderers 4–0, manager Guus Hiddink took off both Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard only for Bolton to score three late goals which questioned the Chelsea defence, and in particular Čech. However Čech responded when Petr Cech saved a penalty from Mark Noble in Chelsea's 1–0 win at the Boleyn Ground against West Ham United F.C.. Petr Cech also kept a clean sheet in the next game against FC Barcelona during the Champions League semifinal first leg match. Following a 3–2 win against Sunderland F.C. at the Stadium of Light, Čech and Chelsea finished the season with the joint-tightest defence in the Premier League along with Manchester United F.C.; conceding just 24 goals over the course of the season. Despite conceding the fastest goal in FA Cup Final history, Čech helped Chelsea's 2009 FA Cup Final triumph over Everton F.C.. Chelsea won 2–1, earning the Czech Petr Cech seventh trophy at the club.

Former coach Luiz Felipe Scolari accused Čech, Michael Ballack and Drogba of causing Petr Cech sacking, saying that they "did not accept my training methods or my demands". Scolari also claimed that it stemmed from a row between Petr Cech and the Czech goalkeeper over the choice of goalkeeper coach. The latter denied the claims saying that Petr Cech was "disappointed with Scolari because never in my life have I had a personal goalkeeping coach".

2009–10 season

Čech began the 09–10 season in winning form with Chelsea, beating Manchester United in the 2009 FA Community Shield final at Wembley. With the game tied 2–2 at the end of normal time, Čech saved penalties from Ryan Giggs and Patrice Evra.
Čech kept goal for Chelsea in the six match winning run that opened their season and placed them on top of the Premier League. However,on September 26, 2009, Čech was sent off and at the same time conceded the winning penalty for tripping Wigan Athletic forward Hugo Rodallega, in the defeat that broke the run and conceded the lead in the league to Manchester United for the time being. On 27 February 2010, Cech picked up an injury in the UEFA Champions League clash against FC Internazionale Milano. On the 13th of April against Bolton, Čech kept Petr Cech 100th clean sheet for Chelsea. Since then Petr has shown many key and solid performances in the last few games remaining in the Premier League. Petr Cech made a fantastic save against Wigan's Victor Moses that sealed the Golden Glove award for Petr Cech this season. Petr Cech concluded Petr Cech season by saving a penalty against Portsmouth in the FA Cup final, ensuring that the Blues went on to retain the Cup and achieve their first domestic double.

2010–11 season

Čech suffered a calf injury in Chelsea's pre-season, a recurrence of an injury suffered against Inter Milan the previous season. A spokesman for Chelsea confirmed: "Petr will be out for around a month after scans showed a tear in Petr Cech right calf. Petr Cech is expected to miss the rest of the pre-season campaign." Čech subsequently missed the following three weeks, including Chelsea's 3-1 loss to Manchester United in the Community Shield. Petr Cech returned on August 14 and kept a clean sheet as Chelsea beat West Bromwich Albion 6-0, which the Czech making a good save from Graham Dorrans' deflected effort. Cech then made a series of excellent saves from Andrei Arshavin in a 2-0 win over Arsenal F.C. , before keeping a clean sheet in a 0-0 draw at Villa Park. Čech managed to recover from conceding many goals and losing matches when Chelsea came back to win a UEFA Champion's League match against MSK Zilina 2-1.On 6 March, a day on ChelseaTV was put aside to celebrate the success of the chelsea no.1 goakeeper. On that day, Petr Cech received calls live on ChelseaTV from concerned fans around the world as Petr Cech prepared for Petr Cech 300th Chelsea appearance against promoted side Blackpool.

International career

Čech began Petr Cech career in the U15s, working Petr Cech way up each age group level before making Petr Cech senior debut in February 2002. Petr Cech first came to prominence as a twenty-year-old at the 2002 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship when Petr Cech penalty shoot-out heroics in the final against France earned the Czech Republic their first title at youth level. Petr Cech was part of the Czech 2004 UEFA European Football Championship team. Some stunning saves helped Petr Cech team progress as far as the semi-finals, where they lost to eventual winners Greece national football team on the silver goal rule. Petr Cech was named in the all-star team as best goalkeeper at the tournament.

The Czech Republic qualified for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, held in Germany, and were placed in Group E, alongside Ghana national football team, Italy national football team and the United States men's national soccer team. The Czech Republic was placed third by the end of the group stages, and with one win against the United States, winning by 3–0, and two losses against Ghana and Italy, the score 2–0 in both games, the Czech Republic did not advance to the second round.

On 17 October 2007, Čech was captain of the Czech Republic team for their Euro 2008 Group D qualifier against Germany. Petr Cech kept a clean sheet and the Czechs defeated Germany 3–0 away to book their place for the finals in Austria and Switzerland. In the last group game of the final tournament, Čech was beaten three times in the final 15 minutes as Turkey overcame a two-goal deficit to knock the Czechs out. Čech had a cross slip through Petr Cech hands, allowing Nihat Kahveci to score the second (and equalizing) goal.

After the blunder against Turkey, Petr Cech took full responsibility for Petr Cech team's exit from the UEFA Euro 2008 and actually considered retiring but then Petr Cech was talked out of it and Petr Cech stated that Petr Cech wants to keep representing the Czech Republic "for many years to come" and also stated that Petr Cech wants to repay Petr Cech mistake and confidence that all the Czech Republic's players have in him.

Personal life

Čech has two sisters, Marketa who is older, and Sarka who is the same age. Petr Cech was born a triplet along with Sarka and a brother named Michal who died aged two after contracting an infection in the hospital. Petr Cech is married to Martina Čechová (b. 1982) who is also of Czech nationality. They have a daughter Adéla (b. January 23, 2008) and a son Damián (b. June 16, 2009), both born in Prague. Petr Cech is left-handed.


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