PETR CECH has told Wayne Rooney to forget about scoring another landmark goal against Arsenal today.
This weekend marks the 15th anniversary of when Rooney scored his first Premier League goal as a 16-year-old in the same fixture at Goodison Park.
His blistering strike past then-Gunners keeper David Seaman was the first of 201 Premier League goals — seven of them against Cech when he was No 1 at Chelsea.
But Cech — still to be beaten by Rooney as an Arsenal keeper — believes his Gunners team-mates will not allow England’s all-time top goalscorer to repeat his heroics from all those years ago.
Cech said: “Wayne has a great memory of that day. I remember seeing it on TV and it was a great effort to beat Seaman.
“Wayne is one of the world’s best strikers and when you score the most goals for Manchester United it shows how good you are.
“He has gone back to Everton and keeps scoring goals. Hopefully, we’ll not allow him to shine like he did that day.
“We know a lot more about him now of course because he has been at the top of the game for 15 years.
“But Everton and Rooney are in a position where they need to take points as well. Like us they had a Europa League game on Thursday. We both need to win. It is always tough when you go to Everton but we’ll go there to be resolute, strong and ready.”
Cech knows that Arsenal must cure their travel sickness — and fast.
A hard-fought 1-0 win at Red Star Belgrade in the Europa League on Thursday may have given the Gunners some slight relief.
But the fact remains that defeat at Everton today could prove disastrous for Arsenal’s chances of qualifying for next season’s Champions League.
Cech added: “We’ve won all the games at the Emirates — but we need to start winning away.
“OK Watford, with the bad luck, is one game. But we had lost two games prior to that — and the losses at Stoke and Liverpool were so disappointing.
“So we’re going to Everton with a need to improve on that and our position in the table as we’ve given the advantage to our rivals in the last game.
“Prior to last year, we had the best away record in the league.
“We need to go back to that. Defensively we need to be tight because away from home we’re creating chances but not scoring enough goals.”
Wenger has used the Europa League and League Cup as platforms to blood his kids.
The atmosphere in the Stadion Rajko Mitic in Belgrade was electrifying and Cech insists the Gunners boss was very clever in allowing the youngsters to experience that.
Rob Holding, 22, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, 20, Reiss Nelson, 17 and Jo Willock, 18, started in the Serbian capital — while Ben Sheaf, 19, and Marcus McGuane, 18, came on for late cameos.
Cech started his first game in Europe this season and kept Red Star at bay before Arsenal striker Oliver Giroud popped up with a late winner.
And he said: “It really did feel like a Champions League game. The crowd in Belgrade made it so special.
“This was a perfect game for the young players because it was the hardest game we’ve faced in the Europa League and we had a whole bench of young boys and we had four of them playing again. They did really well.
“They’re lucky in a way that the boss gave them confidence in playing them in matches like this. It is a big game.
“It’s a European competition and we want to, as a club, ideally win it like Manchester United did if possible.
“For them to get the trust of the manager is very important.”