Cech’s free-kick theory refutes Chris Kamara positioning criticism


On Goals on Sunday, Chris Kamara criticised Petr Cech’s positioning for Dusan Tadic’s free-kick that brought Southampton’s first goal on Saturday.

Kamara suggested the Arsenal keeper left too much space on the right side of his goal for Tadic to aim at.

But Cech explained that he was also aware that Saints Virgil Van Dijk might have hit the free-kick to the other side.

Cech told Arsenal.com:  “The wall is there to protect half of the goal, so the position of the free-kick was literally in the middle where Van Dijk could easily hit my side very hard. Then you need to protect this side and the wall takes the other side.

“Obviously, if you have the free-kick taken very well – which it was – then you need to make sure that you are ready to go. I was ready to go but unfortunately it didn’t turn out to be a good save but an own goal.”

Cech managed to touch Tadic’s free-kick onto the bar, but the ball rebounded in off his back for an unfortunate own-goal.

“It was a good free-kick. I got a touch and I was so pleased that I saw the ball going on the bar, but in the end it turned out to be an own goal. Which obviously, in that moment of the game, was against the run of play and we didn’t need this unlucky moment. But I think our reaction was very good, we got a goal back in the first half, we tried to push for the winning goal. It came in the last minute but I think we were aggressive and we were searching for it so in the end we probably deserved a little bit of luck back.”

As for the late penalty that won Arsenal the game, Cech was happy to ‘do a Wenger’ and admit he hadn’t properly seen the incident.

“For the penalty, what would it be like for me to comment? Because there were so many people, I couldn’t see anything and I’m, you know, 105 yards away. So I didn’t see the incident. Second thing, Santi was really strong because it was an injury to Laurent so he had to wait for quite a long time and he was very composed. The great players do great things and he did it today.”