Cahill: Arsenal draw good prep for Barca by tayyiba11


									Gary Cahill has hailed Chelsea's display in their bore draw at Arsenal as
the ideal dress rehearsal for Tuesday's do-or-die Champions League trip
to Barcelona.
Cahill, John Terry and Petr Cech once again proved impassable as the
Blues kept another clean sheet in Saturday's Barclays Premier League game
at the Emirates Stadium.
Less than three days after denying Lionel Messi and his Barca team-mates
a goal in Wednesday night's Champions League semi-final first leg win,
Cahill helped manage to thwart one of the world's other great forwards in
Robin van Persie.
The defender said: "It was great practice, coming up against the likes of
Robin van Persie, who's in form this season, and is one of the best
forwards in the world at the minute.
"It doesn't get any harder, does it, this week, facing the likes of Messi
and then Van Persie and then back to Messi and the boys?
"So to keep two clean sheets in the two games we've just played is
pleasing for us as a whole team."
Keeping clean sheets is something Chelsea have been accustomed to again
since Cahill and Terry finally translated the partnership forged with
England to club level.
The pair have conceded just one goal in the five matches they have
started together and have yet to lose in any of the eight games in which
both have played a part.
It is the kind of solidity Chelsea have arguably lacked since selling
Ricardo Carvalho.
However, the biggest test of that will come at the Nou Camp.
Cahill said: "I think we require similar to the home leg: a little
element of luck; defensively as a whole unit everyone sticking to their
task; and the concentration level.
"The other night, I think physically I've run more in games, but the
concentration level had to be unbelievably high and that's what all the
lads did.
"So we need that again."
Cahill will be one only a few Chelsea players never to have played at the
near-100,000-seater home of the European champions.
"Obviously, I haven't played there yet, but the lads tell me that the
pitch is massive," he said.
"It's tough because obviously there'll be a lot of space there and
fantastic players filling it.
"We know how tough it's going to be but we go there to give it our all
and with a good start."
The current run of games is exactly why Cahill decided to trade a
relegation dogfight with Bolton for a January move to Stamford Bridge.
He said: "First of all, you want to be at a big club. Then, when you're
there, you want to play as massive part in it.
"So to play a part in what's been a great week and, really, a great
couple of months result-wise is pleasing."
It will all be for nothing, of course, if Chelsea fail to win one of the
Champions League and FA Cup and finish outside of the Premier League top
Caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo yesterday hit out at the "crazy"
schedule that could cost his side dearly.
He was forced to make eight changes on Saturday and watched the Blues
slip four points behind fourth-placed Newcastle with only four game
Had Fernando Torres, Daniel Sturridge and Salomon Kalou been more
clinical in the final third, those changes would have been completely
Cahill said: "It's important to get some fresh legs out there and the
lads that came in did really well.
"People come in but it's the same Chelsea, the same sort of way that
we've been playing and we take the momentum in getting another result.
"Obviously, three points would have been tremendous for us, but coming to
Arsenal and taking a point, you've got to take the positives from that."

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