Having played a significant role in our 2-1 win at Arsenal, Petr Cech believes the result will have sent out a warning to our title rivals.
The Chelsea goalkeeper made two stunning stops midway through the second half to keep us in front, firstly to deny Lucas Podolski, whose header looked destined for the top corner, and soon after from a deflected Olivier Giroud cross.
Both teams went into the game unbeaten in the league, but with Arsene Wenger’s side already having emerged unscathed from trips to Liverpool and Manchester City, we were the team with it all to prove, and Cech feels we responded in the perfect manner.
‘It’s a great win, we wanted to stay top of the league,’ said the 31-year-old. ‘Everybody was saying that it would be a big test for us because Arsenal have been playing really well.
‘We knew that if we didn’t win we could have been behind for the first time this season, but we got the three points and I thought it was a good performance.
‘We did really well over the 90 minutes, you expect Arsenal to have a few chances at home. It’s just a pity because in the second half we had so many good counter-attacks, but we didn’t pick the right pass to kill the game off, that’s why it was still in the balance.’
With a new-look Blues side gradually beginning to take shape, nobody would expect to see Roberto Di Matteo oversee a change in playing style without a few creases to iron out to overcome. However it has been as positive a start to the league campaign as anybody could have wished for, with the Blues top of the table having dropped only two points.
‘It’s a team in construction but, because we have a lot of good players, we’ve been doing well, but I hope we can still improve,’ said Cech.
‘There are some new lads in the team who are discovering Premier League football, and as they get more experience, they will become better players.
‘We’ve had difficult games so far and managed to come through them really well, we’re taking it step by step, game by game. Everybody was saying we’ll see what they can do, and we did well, so that’s pleasing.’
Cech went on to praise the contributions of Juan Mata, who looks a player reborn following his recent two-week break, and the skipper John Terry, who went into the game having barely trained following his appearance at an FA hearing.
‘For us, the important thing is to have Mata for the whole season, not to have him for three months and then see him burn out,’ said the Blues goalkeeper.
‘If you play 60 games and then go to the Euros and Olympics, it’s easy to burn out. He needed a break, and it was well done by the coaching staff.
‘All through his career, John Terry’s shown that playing football is what matters to him. He’s playing and focusing on his game. All the other things are unfortunate, but he’s on the pitch doing well, and that’s where we need him.’