‘It took him a long time to score past me… I was an Arsenal player when he eventually did’: Petr Cech aims playful dig at Lionel Messi by noting how much Barcelona star struggled against him on the big stage
- Petr Cech has reflected on his time as a goalkeeper in the Champions League
- The Chelsea icon spoke in the club’s official programme prior to Rennes
- Cech notes how Lionel Messi used to struggle against him on the big stage
- The veteran star remembers exactly how many attempts it took Messi to score
Petr Cech is making sure nobody forgets just how much of an incredible goalkeeper he was in his pomp, by aiming playful jibes at none other than Lionel Messi.
The Chelsea legend has this week brought up the fact that Messi simply could not score past him on the biggest stage, requiring many attempts to do so.
Cech reflected this week during an interview for Chelsea’s match-day programme prior to their Champions League group stage clash with Rennes.
Petr Cech has reflected on his Chelsea pomp and brought up Lionel Messi’s struggles
It was only when Cech moved to Arsenal that Messi finally found the back of his goal
The veteran stopper approached the subject of Barca superstar Messi before musing: ‘It took him a long time to score past me – 10 games in fact as I was an Arsenal player when he eventually did.
‘He missed penalties, I made saves, he hit the post, but he never scored past me at Chelsea. It was a pleasure to keep a clean sheet against him.
‘When he had the penalty in the Nou Camp in 2012, that was a defining moment.’
Cech emerged as arguably the best goalkeeper in the world for a period during his Chelsea days, though admits he gave great thought to Messi’s penalty technique.
Cech added: ‘I was thinking about what he could do, what he would do. So my strategy was to wait and wait until I could see where he was going to hit it.
Cech reveals he focused on Messi’s penalty technique, prior to him missing in 2012
‘So when I moved the way he was going to strike the ball, he knew he had to go high to beat me – but he went too high and it struck the bar.’
The night in question when Messi failed to beat Cech from 12 yards was huge for Chelsea.
The Blues pulled off a historic draw at the Nou Camp, courtesy of a late breakaway goal by Fernando Torres to win the tie on aggregate and book their place in the Champions League final; which they would go on to win in Munich.
Speaking of the match Cech said: ‘That game, in general, was huge. When you’re 2-0 down at the Nou Camp with 10 men and it’s still the first half, you’re thinking it’s going to be a long, long night.
‘My friends who were at the game said after that they had discussed the one position they wouldn’t want to be in on a night like that and they agreed it was the goalkeeper’
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