Safe pair of hands

PUBLISHED : Friday, 03 October, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 03 October, 2008, 12:00am

Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech started out as a midfielder for his hometown club

Petr Cech

Born: May 20, 1982

Chinese horoscope: Dog

Nationality: Czech Republic

Club: Chelsea

Position: Goalkeeper

Squad number: 1

Speciality: Superb reflexes

Ten things you need to know about him

1Cech has been named best goalkeeper of the Uefa Champions League three times.

2 He holds the English Premiership record for not conceding a goal in 1,025 minutes. He also has the most clean sheets in a single Premier League season - 2004-2005.

3 He started out as a midfielder for the youth team of his hometown club. When he broke his leg at the age of 10, he decided to become a goalkeeper.

4 On October 14, 2006, Cech suffered a serious injury. He collided with Reading midfielder Stephen Hunt, whose knee hit the goalkeeper's head. (Watch the incident on YouTube. Keywords: Cech injury).

5 Cech had surgery for a skull fracture. Since then, he has been wearing a rugby-style head covering.

6His favourite pastime is visiting museums in London.

7Cech has a secret weapon - his new orange jersey. He believes the design distracts players when they're shooting for goal.

8 For a collection of his 'strange photos', check out the Chelsea fansite

9 He missed the birth of his daughter, Adela. At the time, he was playing against Liverpool. His friend took his wife, Marina, to the hospital.

10His top five keepers are: Gianluigi Buffon (Juventus), Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), Dida (AC Milan), Oliver Kahn (Bayern Munich) and himself.