Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

It's Turnbull's Turn to Show the Blues Are in Safe Hands

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

It's Turnbull's Turn to Show the Blues Are in Safe Hands

Article excerpt

Byline: Simon Johnson Football Correspondent

FOR the best part of four years, Chelsea goalkeeper Ross Turnbull has had to live in the considerable shadow of Petr Cech.

In one of the best seats in the house, Turnbull has watched Chelsea's firstchoice stopper help the club win major silverware, including the Champions League last May.

But tomorrow night he finally gets a chance to make a name for himself in his own right.

It says a lot for Turnbull's impact since joining Chelsea on a free transfer from Middlesbrough in 2009 that the first leg of the Capital One Cup semifinal against Swansea will see him play in his fourth consecutive game for the Blues for the first time.

In truth, he knew the situation when he agreed to move to the capital -- that he would only get an opportunity in an emergency because Cech is the undisputed No1.

But that doesn't make the role any easier. Indeed, it is one of the hardest positions, especially in SW6 where the stakes are always high and every mistake is scrutinised.

As Turnbull has discovered, you can go months without playing and then be thrust into the spotlight and expected to perform.

He is only getting a run in the side now due to the groin injury Cech sustained in the first half of Chelsea's 2-1 win at Everton on December 30.

So far Turnbull has done as well as could be expected in the Czech international's absence but now he has the pressure on his shoulders of trying to get the team to a major cup final at Wembley.

It is not as if he has much experience to call upon. Despite being a professional for over a decade, Turnbull has still to reach 100 League starts.

Most of his appearances for Chelsea have been in the early rounds of cup competitions, although he did play in the second leg of the Champions League last-16 tie against Inter Milan in 2010. Cech was sidelined with an injury back then, too, and Turnbull could do little to prevent a 1-0 defeat and a disappointing exit. …

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