Petr Cech’s former Chelsea teammate Mark Schwarzer claims the veteran has been performing better than the club’s other goalkeepers in training and could even leave if he receives a tempting offer to play regularly elsewhere.
The 38-year-old hung up his gloves over a year ago, taking on a technical role with Chelsea, though he was a shock inclusion in Frank Lampard’s Premier League squad list earlier this month having impressed in training.
While Cech was listed as ‘emergency cover’, Schwarzer has revealed that the former Czech international is feeling in great shape after his time away from the game and believes he could extend his career.
‘I spoke to him two weeks ago and we were talking about lots of different things, talking about Mendy, Kepa and himself training,’ Schwarzer – who was Cech’s deputy at Chelsea – told Optus Sports.
‘And he just was saying that he felt so good. He said to me that, had he have known that having time off he would have felt so good, he would have only had six months off and wouldn’t have retired. He actually believes he’s fit enough and strong enough and good enough still to play in the Premier League.
‘So it’s an interesting one because he’s caught in two jobs at the moment, he’s Chelsea’s Technical and Performance Advisor and that his number one role.
‘But if an opportunity came along that was of interest to him, I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw Petr Cech coming back out of retirement and playing somewhere. I’m not saying it’s going to happen, but it would not be a shock to me if that happened.’
‘On that, he’s number two. But he’s not because he hasn’t played games. I know he’s kicking the ball further than he did towards the end of his career, because the injuries he had, the problems he had with his ankle, his calf, they were hindering his kicking game.
‘So apparently he has no problems with that at all anymore. He’s kicking the ball as far as he [ever] did.
‘So he’s been working hard, he’s been playing in goal for ice hockey, he’s been doing lots of other fitness stuff, keeping very fit, doing lots of gym work. And he is, now you see in the last couple of weeks, he’s been training with Chelsea on the football pitch.’
On whether Lampard would seriously consider playing Cech ahead of Kepa Arrizabalaga if Mendy ever got injured, Schwarzer added: ‘I think he has to play Kepa, because if he doesn’t it will kill him.’