After a professional career spanning two decades, including 15 years competing in the English Premier League, goalkeeper Petr Cech has decided to call time and retire at the end of his current campaign with Arsenal.
Having first arrived from Rennes in Ligue 1 to EPL side Chelsea, he spent eleven years there before moving over to the Gunners for the remainder of his career. His record-breaking achievements in European football are staggering:
- Winner of the Golden Glove award with two different teams (Chelsea and Arsenal).
- Winner of the Golden Glove award four times (2005, 2010, 2014, and 2015).
- Winner of UEFA Best Goalkeeper award three times (2005, 2007, 2008).
- Went 1,025 minutes in the EPL without conceding a goal (2004-2005).
- Fewest appearances required to reach 100 clean sheets (180 appearances).
- Most clean sheets in a season (24) as well as overall (202).
- More saves in the EPL than any other goalkeeper (1136).
- Highest shots-to-save ratio for any goalkeeper making at least 500 total saves (75.4%).
- 124 appearances for the Czech Republic, more than any other Czech player.
Having been one of the most recognizable goalkeepers due to his protective cap (a result of fracturing his skull in a match against Reading in 2006), he is less well-known but equally notable for his philanthropic activities. Cech spent an inordinate amount of time over the years in London hospitals with sick children (many of them terminally ill), trying to offer comfort and encouragement under difficult and heartbreaking circumstances. He also is an amateur artist, having donated his artwork over the years in order to raise money for a host of charities.
But his passion (away from the pitch) is his drumming, for which he has his own personal YouTube channel with almost 50,000 subscribers. He can be seen performing solo as well as with other well-known drummers, such as Roger Taylor of Queen.
The soccer community is a better place for his years between the sticks and can only wish him the best in all his future endeavors.