Čech was one of the heroes of Chelsea's dogged defense against the Barcelona onslaught
Czech national and Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Čech says that Barcelona are still the favorites to get through to the Champions League final after the London team’s 1-0 first leg semifinal victory.
Writing on his personal website, Čech said the Catalan team were still the “slight favorites” in spite of their first defeat in the Champions League on Wednesday night. “They are playing at home and they have a great success rate at the Nou Camp. But we will not be give up on getting through and will fight to qualify [for the final] to the last minute,” Čech added.
The Czech goalkeeper said that the one goal victory was about the best Chelsea could expect, but he maintained that the team deserved the win. “We all played to our limits and I think that for that dedication we deserved to win” he said. “Of course we were lucky, but you always need that against such an exceptional team,” he added.
‘Of course we were lucky, but you always need that against such an exceptional team.’
Chelsea striker Didier Drogba scored with what was almost the team’s only real chance of the match at the end of the first half. The home team were held back in their own half for much of the game with Barcelona squandering a series of chances to score. The Catalans hit both the bar and post during the game with midfielder Cesc Fàbregas missing what looked like a clear chance to score.
Čech was one of the heroes of Chelsea’s opportunistic defensive display. He picked out a late save from a header by Barcelona defender Carles Puyol as his best effort. “I am really pleased by that clean sheet. It was important not to concede a goal.”
The second return leg will be played in Barcelona on April 24.