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Chelsea legend Petr Cech has returned to the club as the club’s new Technical and Performance Advisor, Chelsea FC confirmed today.
Cech will be based at Cobham and his role will be to work closely with Chelsea Director Marina Granovskaia to align the men’s first team coaching and backroom staff, travelling with the team home and away with an emphasis on strategy and performance.
Cech spent the last four years with Arsenal but has now returned to the club, and the legend has revealed what prompted him to retire from his playing career and return back to Stamford Bridge.
Speaking on his decision to come back to Chelsea, Cech told the official Chelsea website: “I wanted to consider every possible option I had and I have to say I had so many options to keep playing because everybody was trying to persuade me to carry on playing,’ Cech explains. ‘So I had this on the side and I had offers from various places to continue in different roles but this offer I got from Chelsea is personal to me because I had a great history with this football club.
“It was the best offer for me to consider and in the end I feel really happy and privileged to have this opportunity to come back and especially in the role I have, which is a role with a lot of responsibility and this is something I am really looking forward to.”
On the role he’d be playing at the club, the legendary goalkeeper explained: “I will be closely working with everybody at Cobham, every department – performance, recruitment, the team – and I have had 20 years of a professional career and 15 years in England with top teams. I have gained a lot of experience over the course of those years.
“When you are a player you always see things in slightly different ways and you think why can’t things work this way. I can use that to my advantage because I know how a player feels or what they prefer or what they want to feel prepared to perform and to be at their best every day. This is something I know, what it takes to be prepared for a high-level performance game and this what I would like to create, a high-level performance environment – which is already in place but I would like to push it even further.
“We can work at the best possible rate to make sure we have the best possible chance to win every game. This is something obviously easier said than done but there are a lot of things you can work on and you work with people and as a team, work towards the same goal. This is something I am really looking forward to because I like to have the opportunity to influence things and to make things work.”
Cech then admitted that visiting Stamford Bridge as a visitor was a tough one after 11 years at the club. He said: “The first visit to Stamford Bridge as an Arsenal player was the tough one because it felt very strange that you warm up on the other side and you go to the other dressing room, and then all these songs are playing and it feels like you are still here, but at the same time you arrive with a different team.
“It was only the first one when I found it hard. Over the course of the seasons, the second and third ones we met many times. Then it felt to me normal to come as a visitor but every time you come back, all the memories come back. You can’t forget 228 clean sheets, all the trophies you have, the Double and big wins at home, the Champions League, League Cups, everything.
“You just can’t forget it so it is always a special feeling when you come back. Coming back again is completely new to me now, but it doesn’t feel unknown.”