Petr Cech believes Arsenal could have lost their Champions League encounter with Bayern Munich on Tuesday had it not been for two crucial saves he made when it was still scoreless.
The experienced goalkeeper, an off-season recruit from Chelsea, denied Thiago Alcantara early on at the Emirates Stadium, before preventing Robert Lewandowski from opening the scoring after the break.
Late goals from Olivier Giroud and Mesut Ozil then helped Arsenal to a vital 2-0 victory to keep their Champions League ambitions alive and Cech was delighted with his own contribution to the team’s success.
“I think there were two key moments,” Cech told the official Arsenal website.
“Obviously if Thiago had scored early in the game then they would have had control of the game so it was a very important save at the start.
“And then I’m obviously glad I made the save against Lewandowski as in that moment we could have been 1-0 down, but instead in a few minutes we were 1-0 up and [that] basically decided the game.
“As much as it went up and down and there were chances and shots and it was very entertaining, it looked like one goal might decide it. We are glad that we were the team that scored the goal.”
The win over Bayern has boosted Arsenal’s hopes of making it to the knockout stages following defeats away to Dinamo Zagreb and at home to Olympiacos in their first two matches respectively, but Cech acknowledged they are still in a difficult situation.
“Obviously we are back in the game but our position has not changed much as Olympiacos won their game and obviously they have the home advantage in the next leg so we still need more points.
“We go to Munich knowing we can compete with them and we are positive another game awaits where we can get points. Obviously it will depend on how the game will go but it has been a great night and let’s see what will happen in the future.”
Arsenal remain fourth in Group F with three points from as many games. They are level on points with Dinamo and trail joint leaders Bayern and Olympiacos by just three points.