Petr Cech officially joined his team mates in training as the former Chelsea goalkeeper started his Arsenal career. Cech joined the training session for the Gunners at London Colney on Friday.
The 33-year-old recently completed a £10 million move from cross town rivals Chelsea. After falling down the pecking order to young Belgian stopper Thibaut Courtois, Cech wanted to move to a side that can guarantee more game time.
The move had its own teething problems with Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho trying to scupper the move. He didn’t want to strengthen a direct title rival and especially Arsenal and Arsene Wenger. But, it is believed that Cech had a special consideration from Blues owner Roman Abramovich that the club will not block his exit to a Premier League rival.
All’s well that ends well and the experienced shot stopper joined Arsenal. There was enough support from both within and outside the club on the qualities he can bring. French defender Mathieu Debuchy feels that the arrival has galvanized the entire squad and they are ready to challenge for the Premier League title next season.
Former Blues great Frank Lampard believes that Arsenal have become genuine title challengers with just one signing – that of Cech. And Blues captain John Terry lamented the transfer which is worth ’12 to 15 points’ for the North London club.
During his time at the Stamford Bridge, Cech is a multiple title winner. His cabinet is full with four Premier League titles, four FA cups, three League Cups, the Champions League and Europa League. This is the sort of experience that any team craves for and the Gunners may just have got themselves a wild card to the title.
Cech will compete with Wojciech Szczesny and David Ospina for the first team though there are reports linking both the incumbent keepers with a move away from the club. It would be a disgrace to the experience and capability of Cech to say that he may not be a direct choice. Cech would surely be one of the first names that would be penciled in by Wenger from now on.
The veteran goalkeeper will travel with the Gunners to Singapore after being named by Wenger in the 27-player squad for the Barclays Asia Trophy. Ironically, the season will start for Cech with a Community Shield match against his old club Chelsea on August 2.
Do you think Cech is that last piece of the puzzle for Wenger? Is the club ready to challenge for EPL next season?