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New Arsenal signing Petr Cech reveals how he almost joined the Gunners 10 years ago

Petr Cech joined Arsenal on Monday afternoon and has revealed the move was actually 10 years in the making.

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The Gunners announced the capture of the 33-year-old via their official Twitter account earlier in the week after days of constant speculation.

Cech has become Arsene Wenger’s first major signing of the 2015 summer transfer window, but the move could have happened a decade ago when the experienced goalkeeper was learning his trade back home in the Czech Republic, but a deal fell through due to work permit issues:

“There was a chance before I went to France [to join Rennes] that I could sign for Arsenal but I was only 18 or 19 and at that time Czech Republic were not in the European Union,” Cech explained to the club’s official website.

“You needed a work permit and the conditions were to play 75 per cent of the first-team games for the national team, which at the time was impossible for me to get. In the end I went to France because I couldn’t get a work permit.

“If I could have got the permission, maybe my story would have been a completely different story but here we are 10 or more years later, and now we can write the story again,” he added.

Chelsea were the ones to benefit and signed the stopper from Rennes in 2004 and it turned out to be one of their best-ever additions.

During his 11 years in West London, Cech was able to win every single major club honour available to him and picked up his fourth Premier League winner’s medal on the final day of last season as he played enough games to qualify for one, despite being back-up to Thibaut Courtois for the league program.

He will be hoping to inspire the Gunners to a first league title since the 2003-04 campaign as he’s expected to be the club’s number one next season ahead of David Ospina and Wojciech Szczesny.

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