Despite talk of Petr Cech being passed his best, Arsene Wenger is convinced the goalkeeper can keep playing until he’s 40.
Cech has come under harsh criticism since his move from Chelsea to Arsenal in 2015. Despite the 35-year-old having the odd brilliant game, many have recognised that he’s no longer the shot-stopper he once was. However, Wenger still reckons he’s more than capable of continuing for years to come.
“I remember Edwin Van der Sar at Manchester United, I compare them,” said Wenger. “They are intelligent, they have great similar size, similar quality. And Van der Sar stopped at the end because he decided to stop. Because Manchester United wanted him to stay one more year longer. I don’t rule out [Cech playing until he is 40], but that will only be down to the performances.”
Cech’s contract with Arsenal runs out in June 2019 and it’s unclear whether the club will offer him an extension or whether he would even accept it.
Since leaving Chelsea, he’s yet to save a penalty for the Gunners and, at this level, we really should have a pair of safe hands between the sticks that we can trust.
Saying this, Cech is apparently a great leader, so perhaps keeping him around is more about the former Czech Republic international helping out in the dressing room behind the scenes.
One thing’s for sure, Cech is a true professional and a gentleman. So, while I realise we need to get a new goalkeeper in, it’s definitely been a pleasure to have him at the club. Although he may not quite be the shot-stopper Arsenal need, I’m sure he can find his level elsewhere and he’s fit enough to carry on for another few years – Wenger certainly thinks so.