CECH: A NEW NOVEMBER
A start for Petr Cech today will take him into sixth place in the list of all-time Chelsea appearance-makers, edging ahead of another Chelsea legend, Dennis Wise. It's not a feat the Czech keeper takes lightly ahead of our game with Newcastle.
'I think it's a great achievement because being a goalkeeper you can only get appearances when you play. You don't get to play the last five minutes when the manager makes a tactical substitution so if you are the goalkeeper you either play or you don't,' Cech said.
'Coming sixth highest in appearances means I have always played. Hopefully I will get some more! When I signed my first target was to get in the goal, to make it possible. Nine years on, in my 10th season now, I'm still here, I'm playing and with all the things we have won I am very pleased.'
We ended October with an unblemished record, picking up six wins out of six. Today's game is the first of five in November, a month in which we have struggled in recent seasons. The last three have seen us play a cumulative total of 21 games, of which we have won just six. Cech is hopeful that that will not be the case in 2013's penultimate month.
'We always say, 'Be careful because November was not the greatest month', and we said it again two years ago and again last year. The last three seasons it didn't really work out and that is very hard to explain,' said the 31-year-old.
'But the past is the past. Hopefully this time it will be a different story because at the moment we have a good momentum from October and we would like to carry it on and keep winning games. Since we lost to Everton and Basel we have had exactly the reaction we were looking for. When you have a bad result you need to step up and put things right, and we have done that.
'We are now in a good position in the league and a good position in the Champions League group, and we have to carry on like that because it's a long campaign.'
Of today's game, traditionally a very competitive fixture, our keeper is wary of the strong reaction he expects from a Newcastle side still reeling from their derby-day defeat last week.
'I think it will be more difficult because the only way for the team to say sorry to the supporters that they lost this game, which is really important for them, is to play a big game and try and get a good result.
'Chelsea is a big game and obviously they will have a lot of motivation to put the Sunderland defeat behind them. We have to be careful.'