Jose Mourinho believes record-breaking Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech is at the peak of his powers.
The 31-year-old kept his 209th clean sheet for the Blues in the 2-0 win against Hull City on Saturday, beating the previous record set by club legend Peter Bonetti.
Belgian keeper Thibaut Courtois, currently on loan with Atletico Madrid for a third season, is expected to be Cech’s long-term successor.
There has been speculation over whether Courtois, 21, will return to Stamford Bridge next season – but Mourinho insists the current number one still has plenty to offer.
He said: “Petr is at the best stage for a goalkeeper – between the age of 30-35.”
And Mourinho expects Cech to stay as number one long enough to beat David James’ Premier League record of 169 clean sheets.
The Czech Republic international now has 150 top-flight shut-outs.
“It is almost 10 years playing at the top – since 2004,” Mourinho declared.
“Clean sheet after clean sheet and he beats the record of Mr Bonetti, and probably next year he will beat the record of the Premier League.”