Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has suggested Petr Cech could still make an extraordinary comeback to the Blues team after he was named in their 25-man squad for the Premier League season.
The 38-year-old, who made 494 appearances for Chelsea over the course of 11 seasons between 2004-2015, announced his retirement from football last year.
He has since taken up a role as a technical and performance advisor for the club, but supporters were stunned when his name was included in the playing squad released on Tuesday.
A statement from the club declared: “Petr Cech has been included in the squad as emergency goalkeeper cover.
“This is a precautionary step due to the unprecedented conditions currently caused by the Covid-19 crisis.
“He takes up a position as a non-contract player.”
And speaking following his side’s 0-0 draw with Sevilla in the Champions League, Lampard insisted he had not ruled out the possibility of Cech making an appearance or two in the near future.
“Petr is still very young [for someone retired] and remains fit],” Lampard said. “Will he play? That remains to be seen on the circumstances.
“Petr’s been training with our GKs. With Covid you never know what is around the corner.”
Cech won four Premier League titles, a Champions League and four FA Cups during his time as a player at Stamford Bridge, and it would be a quite extraordinary move if he is, indeed, ever seen in a Chelsea shirt again.
Meanwhile Lampard appeared satisfied with his team’s performance and a rare clean sheet against Sevilla, adding: “I was pleased with that element of it, I spoke to the players about game management.
“Sevilla are a top team in European football. I am happy with the 0-0, I am pleased we got the clean sheet. It was a big deal for us tonight.”