Goalkeeper Courtois ready to battle Cech for Chelsea starting place
Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, currently on loan at Atletico Madrid, says that he is now ready to challenge long-serving first-choice stopper Petr Cech for the No.1 jersey, Sky Sports has reported.
Courtois was signed by Andre Villas-Boas in the summer of 2011, but has not made a first-team appearance. Instead, he has been loaned out to Atletico Madrid to gain senior experience for three successive seasons, leaving Cech with a lack of competition for his place at Stamford Bridge.
The Belgian’s performances for Atletico have been highly impressive, however, and Courtois, 21, now believes that he can mount to serious challenge to become first choice at Chelsea.
He said: "I'm not afraid of fighting for my place with Cech. I'm not afraid of anyone. I have faith in my ability and I know that Mourinho doesn't let a player's status affect his selection decisions. The proof is that he left [Iker] Casillas on the bench because he thought Diego Lopez was training better.’
Courtois also revealed that it was his decision to return to Atletico for this season, adding: "The club [Chelsea] and Jose Mourinho wanted me to return for this season. The management also considered sending me out on loan for a season at another Premier League club.
‘But I didn't fancy that option: I feel good in Madrid and I wanted to play in the Champions League with Atletico."
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