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Ancelotti backs Chelsea keeper Cech to rediscover form

Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti
Ancelotti expects Cech to recover from his recent jitters

Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti has urged keeper Petr Cech to continue to take responsibility in his penalty area in order to overcome his uncertain form.

Communication with his defenders and crosses into the box have troubled the Czech keeper in recent games.

But Ancelotti said: "A goalkeeper that takes responsibility in his box can make the odd mistake.

"I prefer to have a goalkeeper who takes responsibility than one who just stays on his goalline."

The Premier League leaders took only nine points from 18 in December and Cech's performances have come under the spotlight.

Cech and Ancelotti have suggested that the Blues' deep defending has cramped the goalkeeper when dealing with set-pieces and balls into the box.

And the Chelsea coach has called on his number one to dominate his area.

"I like him because he takes on responsibility in the box, he likes to come out to catch," added Ancelotti.

"Above all, that's important in England, to have this kind of keeper."

"I said Petr Cech is one of the most important players for this team, one of the best goalkeepers in the world."

Ancelotti is set to select a strong side to face Watford in the FA Cup on Sunday that could include Michael Ballack, who is thought to be on the point of signing a new contract.

"He has a great personality and I'm happy he will stay here for the next years," Ancelotti said.

"I want to put out my best team. It's a very important competition in England. In Italy, the Italian Cup is not so important.

"We want to do our best. It is one of our objectives, our aim, to win it. Last year we won it. We want to do the best again this year.

"Watford are a good team. I don't know them very well, but I have an opportunity to watch a DVD. Every team can give you problems. It is important to stay focused and concentrated."

Didier Drogba, John Mikel Obi, Michael Essien and Salomon Kalou, will all be missing from the Chelsea side through commitments at the African Cup of Nations.


Despite this, Ancelotti is still keen to sign other African players in the future.

He said: "I think that when they have to play for their national team, it's not a problem. It's like the European players.

"Every top player can go to the national team. It's not a problem for the Africans. It'll be a great opportunity for the young players now to show their quality. I hope they will do a very good job because I trust in these players."

Ancelotti is relishing the opportunity to work more with his players during a less hectic fixture schedule in the coming weeks that includes matches with Watford, Hull, Sunderland, Birmingham and Burnley during January.

"In January we have a possibility to work every week without matches (in midweek)," he added.

"We have a possibility to improve our condition because, in December, we didn't have that opportunity to train.

"For this, I think we lost some physical condition. We had some injuries but I think that, in January, it will be better."

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see also
Chelsea 3-3 Everton
12 Dec 09 |  Premier League
Chelsea 2-1 Fulham
28 Dec 09 |  Premier League
Birmingham 0-0 Chelsea
26 Dec 09 |  Premier League

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