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Whoever I play for, I want to be No.1 - Courtois

The Atletico Madrid loanee does not want to return to Chelsea only to find himself sat behind Petr Cech in the pecking order

By Kris Voakes in Mogi das Cruzes

Thibaut Courtois has insisted that wherever he plays his club football next season, he must be the first-choice goalkeeper.

The Chelsea shot-stopper has spent the last three seasons on loan at Atletico Madrid, and his performances for the Spanish champions and Champions League runners-up have left the Londoners in a quandary over whether to recall Courtois or stick with current number one Petr Cech.

But the Belgium keeper, speaking at his national side’s World Cup training camp, told reporters he would not want to return to Stamford Bridge only to find himself left on the bench.

“I think with my age and the performances I have had, I want to play,” said Courtois. “To be on the bench is not the nicest thing.

"But I will decide after the World Cup, I think. Everything will then be clear.”

The 22-year-old added that he has not spoken to Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho since becoming a La Liga winner with Atletico.

“I spoke to him in May, before the game against Barcelona. That week, he discussed with me what he thinks about me and about everything. That is it.”

The title win in Spain and the World Cup mean these are exciting times for the Genk youth product, and he admitted that he has never experienced such highs.

“Yes, [these are the best days of my career]. In this moment, I am still young. I have had four incredible seasons already, one with my team in Belgium and three with Atletico, so I can be very happy.

“Last season, to be a champion in Spain and play in the final of the Champions League was great. To be here now for a World Cup is amazing. Hopefully we can achieve some nice things here.”

Belgium begin their Group H campaign against Algeria in Belo Horizonte on Tuesday, with Courtois set to line up in goal for Marc Wilmots’ side.

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