Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech believes his responsibility is to help the Czech Republic qualify from a ‘difficult’ Group D at Euro 2016.
The goalkeeper is one of the most senior figures in the squad, having recently broken the appearance record with 120 international caps in 14 years for his country, reports the Arsenal website.
The 34-year-old insists that his and Rosicky’s experience on international level can help the younger members of the Czech Republic squad feel more comfortable.
‘Together with Tomas Rosicky, we are the most experienced players in the team,’ Cech said.
‘We are the two captains, so there is a big responsibility on us and we will try to help everybody prepare, to have the right frame of mind to compete in the tournament.
‘Some of the players will experience their first European Championship so it is always up to us as senior players to make them feel comfortable.’
Cech admitted that his side face difficult fixtures in Group D against Spain, Croatia and Turkey, but insists they should not be written off just yet.
‘We are not the favourites and we have a very difficult group. We have one of the favourites in Spain and probably the dark horse of the tournament in Croatia. You can also never write off Turkey because it’s a team who can, on a good day, play amazingly well and are one of the best teams in the world,’ the goalkeeper added.
‘They are a very dangerous opponent and we have a very difficult group, but we have already had a difficult group in the qualifiers where we had to play Turkey and Holland.’
The former Chelsea shot-stopper believes his national team has a big chance of qualifying for the Last 16 round in the Euro 2016, due to the extended number of teams participating in the tournament.
‘Everybody was saying that we were out and that we would be fighting with Iceland for one of the top spots to qualify, but we were the first team to qualify from the group. You never know in football,’ Cech said.
‘This year, with the extended number of games and number of teams, you have the last-16 round which allows some of the teams in the third spots to qualify. There is a chance. We can even go through by finishing third in the group now so there is a very good chance we will be able to do that.’
During his first season with the Gunners, Cech managed 16 cleaning sheets in the Premier League claiming the Golden Glove award, and in the process helping his side secure a second-place finish in the league.