Last night’s 2-0 victory against Bournemouth saw Petr Cech finally break David James’ Premier League clean sheet record.
The 33-year-old Czech international now has 170 clean sheets in 352 appearances in England’s top flight (including eight in 19 games for Arsenal).
To put the record in context, he took 220 fewer games than James to hit the figure. Moreover, his average of 0.48 clean sheets per game is marginally better than David Seaman who registered 142 clean sheets in 344 Premier League games.
Interestingly, Cech actually has 174 clean sheets to his name, however, four do not officially count as he did not play the full 90 minutes.
It’s also worth noting that this is a Premier League record only.
Top 10 all-time Premier League clean sheet record
- Petr Cech – 170
- David James – 169
- Mark Schwarzer – 152
- David Seaman – 142
- Nigel Martyn – 138
- Pepe Reina – 134
- Edwin van der Sar -134
- Brad Friedel – 132
- Tim Howard – 130
- Peter Schmeichel – 129
Speaking to Arsenal’s Final Whistle show last week, prior to beating the record, Cech revealed the keepers that inspired him during his formative years:
“When I was a kid I looked up to every goalkeeper and tried to learn from all of them. I tried to pick up the pieces and complete the puzzle using all of their best attributes.
“If you look at Oliver Kahn you would see his character and aggression, he was living the game, and then you look at Peter Schmeichel’s presence and his key saves. Edwin van der Sar was fantastic at Ajax and then he did well in England.
“Gianluigi Buffon started playing when he was very young so I thought, ‘Wow, if he can play aged 18, why can’t I play aged 18?’. These are things you pick up and you try to take the best of everyone for yourself and work on things you can improve.”
On breaking the record last night, Cech added: “It’s a great personal achievement and I felt really proud at the end of the game because if you look at the names in the clean sheet numbers and you see all those fantastic goalkeepers who had been playing and are still playing in this league then obviously it is a great achievement to top the list. I’m very pleased after the game we had at Southampton that the clean sheet brought three points as well because we won 2-0.”
He also took to Twitter:
— Petr Cech (@PetrCech) December 28, 2015
There was further praise from inside the camp and beyond…
Arsene Wenger: “I think he can be very proud of that because it is a remarkable achievement and people once again don’t realise how much commitment is behind that, the focus and consistency in his attitude. On top of that he is a remarkably gifted goalkeeper. The consistency is the most difficult to achieve for somebody.”
Calum Chambers: “It is unbelievable. He is an amazing teammate to have. Every day he is talking to me in training and giving me advice and tips so he is a great player to train alongside.”
Top of the league for now and a good way to end the year. Well done to the big man @petrcech on his clean sheet record as well ?? #AFC A photo posted by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (@alexoxchamberlain) on
A small team in West London
Stoke City’s Jack Butland