Messi Vs Cech – The Biggest Adversary Messi Ever had to Face? Imagine being the greatest footballer in the world; how great it’d be to see defenders quiver at the sight of you gliding across the field with the ball. You take on one defender and then another, and suddenly you are one on one with the goalkeeper. The crowd can’t wait to begin celebrating, and then the unthinkable happens. The keeper somehow prevents you from scoring the goal, the pundits can’t believe it and the fans are absolutely furious. If this scenario seems unlikely, brace yourself for the fact that this is what Messi has gone through every time he has had to face Petr Cech.
Petr Cech has long been considered Messi’s nemesis. No defender or goalkeeper has ever had the kind of power over Messi the way Cech commands. Some critics say that Cech has merely been lucky and that his record should be attributed to the solid Chelsea defense that always had his back. What they fail to point out is the number of times Cech has been on top of the game, reading the Barca attacks and positioning his defenders just right so that they can perform their jobs better.
While Messi himself thinks nothing of this unusual streak, Cech has been quite vocal about it. In a recent interview, he said that he had recently realized how Messi has never scored against him. He was of course referring to his time at Chelsea. The super-successful goalkeeper was Chelsea’s main man between the goalposts and his performances were always greatly appreciated by the fans.
Perhaps the most iconic matchup between the two came in Champions’ League 2012 when Barca and Chelsea met at 24th April. It was proving to be a very tough game for Chelsea who had conceded two goals and were on the back-foot as the Spanish club continued to make some vicious attacks. Messi as always looked dangerous but Cech was on top of him. Not only did Cech keep a number of attacks at bay, he also denied Messi a brilliant one-on-one chance that had the potential to put the game beyond a shadow of doubt. It was a brilliant performance by one of the greatest goalkeepers who kept his cool despite being down to ten men. The character which was shown in this game was so amazing that it actually eclipsed Messi’s presence.
Another great performance that is worth mentioning is the Champions’ League match from late April 2009. It was a goal-less draw and all thanks to the great performances by the defense on each side. Messi shined throughout the game but Cech was in top form. By the time the final whistle was blown, it seemed as if a battle between Chelsea Defense and Messi had come to an end. Judging by the score line, the goalkeeper had triumphed.
The streak was finally broken earlier this year when Messi scored against Arsenal, Petr Cech’s current team. The two men actually had a friendly word after the game and hugged each other. Thus, a great era came to a peaceful end.