World Football

Chelsea Transfer News: Petr Cech Exit Fears, Thibaut Courtois Aims Dig at Rivals

Chelsea's Petr Cech during the English Premier League soccer match between Aston Villa and Chelsea at Villa Park, Birmingham, England, Saturday, March 15, 2014.  (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)
Rui Vieira/Associated Press
Rob BlanchetteFeatured ColumnistAugust 20, 2014

Petr Cech may be close to leaving Chelsea after being left disappointed by Jose Mourinho's treatment of him in the wake of Thibaut Courtois' confirmation as the club's No. 1 goalkeeper.

John Cross of the Mirror says that despite Mourinho's claims that he discussed the matter with Cech, the Portuguese boss actually gave the player the "silent treatment" over the decision.

Cross writes that Courtois only learned of his inclusion at Burnley one hour before kick-off, with Cech left hugely disappointed by the decision and being "left in the dark."

BURNLEY, ENGLAND - AUGUST 18: Thibaut Courtois of Chelsea looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Burnley and Chelsea at Turf Moor on August 18, 2014 in Burnley, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Courtois spoke about his own delight in being named first choice after Chelsea's Premier League opener, per Cross, but added he would have departed Stamford Bridge if he had been overlooked:

I know that Petr is a great goalkeeper, so there is a lot competition. But when you come back from a successful loan, you hope to play. Otherwise, it would maybe have been better for me to go to another team. 

It’s nice that he put faith in me and it’s for me now to prove his faith is right. I need to work hard in every training session and game to gain the confidence of my team-mates and the manager.

Courtois also aimed a dig at Chelsea's rivals, particularly the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United, saying that if they still need to make signings at this point of the season, they "have problems," per Chris McKenna of the Daily Star:

It is good when you have your team done before the league starts. It is important that everyone knows how you plays and you are ready good. If you need to make a transfer at this moment now then you have problems obviously.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech watches the match between Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic and Kevin Anderson of South Africa during their Men's Singles on day five of the Aegon Championships at Queens Club on June 13, 2014 in
Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Sami Mokbel of MailOnline writes that Cech will now demand assurances about his position at Chelsea, especially with Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco both waiting in the wings to swoop for his signature.

Mokbel says Cech wishes to know if he has any chance of recapturing his place in the team or whether he is now viewed solely as a reserve. 

The Times' Oliver Kay believes Cech will stay this season and fight for his place if Mourinho indicates there is an opportunity for him to do so.

But he also confirms the goalkeeper's agent has spoken on the issue and says Chelsea must treat his client "with respect."

The 32-year-old Cech has been the Blues' No. 1 for 10 years now and featured heavily last season on Mourinho's return to the Bridge.

He played in 34 of the team's Premier League matches, per WhoScored.com, but Courtois was earning himself an exceptional reputation in La Liga with his loan club, Atletico Madrid.

COBHAM, ENGLAND - APRIL 29:  Petr Cech of Chelsea participates in a training session at Chelsea Training Ground on April 29, 2014 in Cobham, England.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images

It is unsurprising that Mourinho has chosen the young Belgium international ahead of Cech. Courtois is the future of the club and is already considered one of the best goalkeepers in the world despite his Chelsea career only just beginning.

He must show faith in Courtois over the next year and cannot do that by giving him extended periods on the bench. It is unlikely Cech will ever reclaim his place in Mourinho's starting line-up, and his departure may occur in the next couple of weeks.

Cech is far too good to be a reserve goalkeeper, but he cannot deny Courtois his rightful place.

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