Cech: Balance key to Blues success

Petr Cech thinks it is important for Chelsea to strike the right blend between youth and experience if they are to enjoy a successful season.

Great communication between defender and keeper

The Blues have been criticised in recent seasons for having an ageing squad but there has been something of a regeneration this summer, with veteran striker Didier Drogba leaving for China and youngsters such as Eden Hazard and Marko Marin arriving.

Roberto Di Matteo will be hoping the team can build on last season's achievements and sustain a stronger challenge in the Premier League, and Cech believes the future is bright.

"It is important for a team to have new players, young players and experienced players," said Cech in The Independent.

"I hope we find the right balance to go through the season and have success."

Cech remains firmly established as the first-choice goalkeeper at Stamford Bridge despite the arrival last summer of Belgian Thibaut Courtois.

Courtois will have ambitions to eventually dislodge Cech when he returns from a second season on loan with Atletico Madrid next year, but his senior colleague is ready for the challenge.

"In big clubs they are always buying top players for every position, it is up to you to keep your place," said Cech.

"When the moment comes it will come, but I believe I have a lot to offer and I will try and keep my place for another four years."

Cech, who will have spent a dozen years at Stamford Bridge if he sees out his deal, added: "When I joined I tried to gain my place in the starting XI, to play as much as possible and win trophies, but I was not thinking I could be at Chelsea for 12 years.

"The club is a big part of my life and I am very happy there."

Cech has had seven managers in eight years at the club and, while he admits such instability is not ideal, he respects Roman Abramovich's ambition.

"Ideally a club keeps the manager for a long time but sometimes that is the way it is," said Cech. "If you have an owner who expects the team to win trophies every year, sometimes he will change the coach. Last year the change made a difference which ended up with two trophies."

One of those trophies was the Champions League, which prompted Abramovich to turn Di Matteo's temporary deal into a permanent arrangement.

"If you have the coach of the team who wins the Champions League and the FA Cup you expect that to happen," said Cech. "That is good as all the players know what to expect from the manager already. We don't start from zero."

Di Matteo was initially handed the reins in March following the dismissal of Andre Villas-Boas, who has since sealed a swift return to English football with London rivals Tottenham.

Asked if it was a surprise to see Villas-Boas back, Cech added: "No, because Andre showed he is a great manager before he came to us, that is why the club brought him in.

"We were doing the right things on the training ground but we were not able to transfer this into games.

"It became an issue because we were not able to find the reasons for that, but I believe he will have a different story with Spurs."

 



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