Petr Cech chooses Arsenal over Czech Republic

by Steven Clarke July 10, 2016, 11:31
Petr Cech chooses Arsenal over Czech Republic

Veteran goalkeeper and Czech Republic's record appearance holder Petr Cech on Friday announced his retirement from worldwide football to focus on his club career.

The 34-year-old conceded that he reached a point where he had to take a decision ahead of the World Cup qualifiers, and admits that the decision to retire from global football is with a view to extending his career at club level.

Cech made his senior worldwide debut in 2002 and went on to represent the Czech Republic at Euro 2004 - where they finished third - and the 2006 World Cup before captaining the side at Euro 2008.

The Arsenal goalkeeper played his final major tournament for the Czech national team at Euro 2016 in France, when the team was eliminated in the group stage.

He was part of the Czech side that reached the semi-final at Euro 2004, losing to eventual champions Greece. He helped the team qualify for every continental championship since and played in the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

The 34-year-old played all three matches as his side picked up just one point at Euro 2016, finishing bottom of Group D.

"Petr Cech has announced his worldwide retirement - congratulations on a record-breaking career", Arsenal tweeted.

Speaking to the Arsenal website he said: "This is a purely football-based decision".

"Manchester City with their new manager will do the same thing and let's not forget Liverpool and Spurs and us, I think it will be a very exciting season and will be very challenging for many reasons".

"We lived some fantastic moments together - Wishing the team all the best for the future #CZE", he wrote. And a time might come when I need a rest. He's also made 121 appearances for them, more than any other player in the nation's history. But as I said, you can not stop time and sometimes you need to make decisions looking to the future.

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