Surely the Petr Cech at Chelsea situation cannot carry on much longer… The much-decorated goalkeeper lost his role as the Blues’ No. 1 over the summer as Thibaut Courtois returned to the club following a prolonged loan move, and with the Belgian having been very impressive so far, the 32-year-old looks unlikely to be back in the fold any time soon.
As a result, a January move away from Stamford Bridge for Cech has been mooted, and the latest side to weigh in is Arsenal. Arsene Wenger is rumoured to be lining up a £7m New Year swoop, with adding some quality at the back a pressing concern for the Frenchman.
So could this once unlikely move happen? Here are FIVE reasons we think it makes sense for the Gunners…
While Wojcech Szczesny was improved dramatically over the course of the past few seasons, he’s till not in the same league as Cech. The experienced Chelsea stopper has been one of the best ‘keepers in the Premier League over the course of the past ten years, and at any other club on the planet he would likely be a guaranteed starter.
Szczesny has answered his critics to an extent by improving his command of his area while ironing out errors, but football can be a ruthless world, and Arsenal would be a better unit with Cech at the back.
Since his 2004 move to Chelsea from Rennes, Cech has made over 300 appearances, including showings in some of the biggest games available at the highest level. Aside from the Club World Cup, the Czech star has won every prize available to him at Stamford Bridge and has been a key feature during the Blues’ rise to become one of the continent’s true powers.
The honours list above really illustrates the track record Cech has, and such experience would be of benefit to Arsenal, whose own trophy cabinet has been pretty bare over the same period of time.
Reports suggest that £7m may be enough for the 32-year-old. Even though he’s not a youngster anymore, Cech is by no means over the hill and is, arguably, one of the top five goalkeepers on the planet.
Such a sum for a ‘keeper of his quality is a no-brainer, right? Even the notoriously frugal Arsene Wenger may be unable to pass this one up.
A criticism often levelled at Arsenal is a lack of leadership on the pitch. The Gunners are frequently criticised for having a soft centre with foreign imports and youngsters having changed the perception of the north Londoners from an uncompromising set of winners in the early 2000s to the sort of side that can be bullied on tough away days.
Cech has been an influential player for club and country over the course of the past 10 years and possesses the sort of driven mentality to help move Arsenal back in the right direction.
Despite Arsenal being local and divisional rivals, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is unlikely to stand in Cech’s way if he wants to make the move. The Portuguese manager believes that the loyalty the experienced stopper has shown to the Blues, despite being dislodged by Courtois, makes him deserving of a switch that appeals to him.
This could allow Arsenal to nab a player who would normally be off limits, which is an opportunity that doesn’t come around too often.