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Added January 5th, 2016 by Ian

Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech sets Premier League record for clean sheets

Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech set a brand new English Premier League record at the end of the year when he recorded his 170th clean sheet. The 33-year-old native of the Czech Republic also holds the league record for clean sheets in a single season with 24, which he set in the 2004/05 campaign. Cech set the new mark in a 2-0 win over Bournemouth at the Emirates Stadium in London on December 28th. The win vaulted Arsenal to the top of the standings as the club hopes to win the league title for the first time in 12 years.

However, Cech earned most of his clean sheets while playing with another London club, Chelsea. The keeper earned 162 clean sheets while playing with the Stamford Bridge outfit and his shutout against Bournemouth was his eighth of the season for Arsenal. Cech joined the Gunners last summer after former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho released him. The move backfired spectacularly on Mourinho as his squad got off to its worst-ever start in the Premier League by losing nine of its first 16 games while Arsenal led the league on January 1st.

The former Premier League record of 169 clean sheets was held by former English international David James, who set the mark in 572 appearances. However, it took Cech just 352 league games to break the record. James’ shutouts came while playing with Liverpool, Aston Villa, West Ham, Manchester City and Portsmouth. Cech was the first player to record 10 straight clean sheets back in 2004/05 and it was a record at the time. Dutch keeper Edwin van der Sar of Manchester United broke that record in 2008/09 though when he posted 14 consecutive clean sheets.

The numbers show that Cech basically posts a shutout every second league game and James congratulated him on the new record by calling him a remarkable man. Cech said he’s honoured to set the new mark, but the only thing he’s concerned about winning is the league title this season since the Gunners haven’t won it since 2004. Cech told the press, “I feel really proud because I believe this is the best league in the world and one of the most difficult for a goalkeeper. It’s a great personal achievement so I’m really proud of that. Hopefully we will celebrate at the end of the season because the title is far more important.”

The Arsenal keeper also played for Chmel Blsany, Sparta Prague and Rennes during his career and will set a new Czech national team record for the most caps ever when he steps onto the pitch for the 119th time sometime in 2016. Cech has won numerous individual and club trophies throughout over the years including Premier League championships, FA Cups, League Cups and a Europa League and Champions League medal. In addition, he holds the Chelsea record for 220 clean sheets for his former club in all competitions and has been named the player of the year in the Czech Republic seven times.

 
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