Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech says his side will need to be at its best if it is to making a winning start to the defense of the Champions League crown when the club entertains Juventus on Wednesday evening.
The meeting with the Italian champions will be the west Londoners’ first game in the competition since they defeated Bayern Munich to lift the European Cup for the first time in May.
Juventus will lineup at Stamford Bridge without boss Antonio Conte, who is serving a ban for failing to report an approach for match-fixing at previous club Siena.
Despite being without its manager, Juve has made a perfect start to the new Serie A season, and Cech is well aware that the Serie A club will put up a good fight at Stamford Bridge.
“We're playing Juventus, who have been missing from the Champions League for a few seasons, so they will definitely want to show they are back,” Cech told Chelsea’s official website.
He added, “Last time we played them we beat them in the knockout stages [in 2009], so this is a chance for them to get revenge for that defeat.
“Anybody who plays against us will want to raise their game, we are the defending champions so its extra motivation for everybody.”
Last season, under the stewardship of Andre Villas-Boas, Chelsea only sealed its progression to the knockout stages in the final group game, and Cech does not want a repeat of that this time around.
“The sooner you can qualify from the group, the better it is,” the 30-year-old said. “But whether you qualify on the last day or the first day it's not important, the main thing is just to get through."
Chelsea was recently humbled by Atletico Madrid in the Super Cup, but Cech hopes to see his side's domestic form - which has seen it start unbeaten - transferred to Europe.
“It's always better if you can keep a clean sheet in the Champions League as it relieves the pressure,” the Czech Republic international said. “It's been a positive start in that sense and we want to keep it going. Against Juventus it will be important as I don't see a game with many goals."
Cech is impressed with Juve's roster and is anticipating a good match against the Italian champions.
“They've been doing well and they will want to keep progressing. They have quite a few younger players who came through a couple of years ago who are still there, they have a very good defense and of course [Gianluigi] Buffon in goal, so it's going to be a very difficult game.”
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