It seems pretty clear to me that the thinking behind the Arsenal manager’s decision to make the Chelsea and Czech Republic keeper Petr Cech his one and only first team signing of the summer transfer window was not based purely on the veteran stopper’s ability between the posts.
Cech was brought in to add his wealth of experience and composure to the whole defence but perhaps more important than that were his qualities as a leader in the dressing room and his experience of major trophy success, especially that elusive Premier League title.
Well the 33-year old certainly needs to harness all of that knowledge and pass it on to his new team mates at the minute. And that is exactly what the keeper is trying to do with his latest comments on the Arsenal website I think.
After Southampton inflicted our fourth league defeat of the season, Cech seems worried that Arsenal are in danger of letting this great chance at the title slip and so he has warned the Gunners that nothing less than maximum effort and application against Bournemouth will do.
He said, “I think in this league if you don’t play well in every game you risk not winning. This is why the Premier League is so special because you don’t have easy games, you don’t have a massive difference between teams.
“You look at the table and realise they [Bournemouth] are behind in terms of points but there are so many games where they could have got points, and they could have even won the game but they end up losing by not having a bit of luck or quality.
“All the games you play against them [lower-placed teams] are really tight so you have to take this into consideration that if you don’t play 100 per cent focused and ready you risk dropping points. That is what happened in those [Bournemouth] games against Manchester United and Chelsea recently.
“They [Bournemouth] had a really good game and fought for each other and were waiting for their chances. Once they were ahead they thought they could get something and then they did really well to see those games out.
“If you look through the squads [in the Premier League] you have so many international players playing everywhere. It is not only about international players wanting to come and playing for the top six teams but they want to come and have this experience of the passion and everything that surrounds the Premier League – it is special.
“Every team nowadays with the new image rights and TV rights contracts, has more money and more possibilities to bring in even better players. It is tougher and tougher to make the difference but every game is becoming more difficult. If you don’t do the right things, sometimes you can get away with that but not many times.”
Will big Pete’s warning have the desired effect though?