Chelsea icon reveals how close he was to joining Barcelona


Barcelona's Xavi Hernandez from Spain (L) fights for the ball with Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech from Czech Republic (R) during their Champions League semi-final, first-leg match at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on April 28, 2009. The match ended 0-0.
Photo credit should read JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images

FC Barcelona have been blessed to have been the club of some of the very best players in the history of football. Immortal players like Maradona, Cruyff, and Messi have all played for the Catalan club and contributed to the club’s legendary status.

However, there have been other very great footballers who did not play for the club but had dreamed of playing for the Catalans. As SPORT has reported, the former Chelsea goalkeeper, Peter Cech, is one of these players, as he himself admitted in a recent interview.

The Czech shot-stopper will be easy for Barcelona fans to remember, as he faced one of the best Barcelona teams in history multiple times in the Champions League. In 2012, the goalkeeper was in sublime form, as he stopped everything that Barcelona threw at him, and ensured his team progress with away goals on a 2-2 scoreline.

However, in 2009, it was the Catalans who got the better of him, with Iniesta’s goal enough to get Barcelona in the final at Chelsea’s expense. Now, remembering those ties, the goalkeeper recalled how those matches were so special for him:

“Playing against Barcelona at Camp Nou is a special moment for any footballer. Something people don’t know is that when I was three or four years old, my favorite team was Barcelona, with Stoichkov, Romario, Koeman… Zubizarreta in goal! It was my childhood team, so playing against Barcelona was a gift for me.”

Cech also recalled how he could have been a Barcelona player had history turned out a little differently:

“It was the presidential elections at Barça and my agent told me that if Laporta’s opponents (Lluís Bassat) won, I would be his first signing. When he (Bassat) lost the elections, my agent told me that bad luck and you’re not going to Barcelona.”

The goalkeeper also remembered the iconic Iniesta goal, and how close he was to saving that:

“I was very close to the ball. Six millimeters, I think even less. I almost touched it, but when you have a shot that is perfect, what can you do? That’s the life of a goalkeeper. If you have someone who shoots perfectly, the goal is very big to cover, it’s a huge space.”

Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari has been covering Spanish football as a writer for Barca News Network for the last one and a half year and as an amateur football fanatic for more than 10 years. He mainly covers on and off-field happenings taking place at Barcelona including transfer news, administrative changes, match reports, and any other eventful news coming out of the club.

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