Cech targets Reds shutout
Petr Cech is determined to improve his run of clean sheets when Chelsea host Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. The Blues will be hoping to close the gap on Premier League leaders Manchester City by beating their rivals for UEFA Champions League qualification.
Over the last week Cech helped the Czech Republic book their place at UEFA EURO 2012 by preventing Montenegro from scoring over two legs. Combined with his clean sheet against Blackburn on 5 November, it has left the 29-year-old chasing a fourth successive shut out. "It makes everything look better," Cech, who is currently playing with a face mask to protect a broken nose, told Chelsea TV.
"I had two very good games [for Czech Republic]. I made important saves in both of them to keep a clean sheet that helped us to win games and qualify, so I'm very happy. I hope that we will have another clean sheet on Sunday because it is a very difficult game."
Denying Blackburn was only the second time this season that Chelsea have finished a Premier League match without conceding. Their only other clean sheet came against Stoke on the opening day of the campaign. Much is at stake against Liverpool on Monday with a setback against Liverpool increasing the pressure on manager Andre Villas-Boas.
There is no suggestion Villas-Boas' position is under threat, but the 34-year-old has endured a challenging start to his career at Stamford Bridge. And the termination of former Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink's contract as Turkey coach will only serve to increase the scrutiny of the Portuguese's progress.