Cech facing three months on sidelines after surgery
Thibaut Courtois may be handed the chance to claim the Chelsea No 1 spot next season as the club fear that Petr Cech will need surgery on his dislocated shoulder.
Cech (31) was taken to hospital in Madrid after he dislocated his shoulder and was replaced by Mark Schwarzer in the 18th minute of Chelsea's goalless draw in the Champions League semi-final first leg with Atletico Madrid.
Having already been ruled out for the rest of this campaign, Cech will face the prospect of missing Chelsea's entire pre-season if he has to go under the knife.
Shoulder surgery typically rules goalkeepers out for around three months, meaning Cech would not be fit to return until the start of August, giving Courtois plenty of time to stake his claim.
Courtois is close to agreeing a new contract with Chelsea that will run until 2018, having spent the past three seasons on loan at Atletico.
However, Cech's injury could prompt Chelsea to take the 21-year-old back to Stamford Bridge this summer and offer the Belgian the chance to become the club's first-choice 'keeper.
John Terry, however, has not given up on playing again this season despite manager Jose Mourinho ruling him out until a potential Champions League final.
Terry injured his ankle against Atletico but did not require a protective boot and is waiting on the results of a scan. With Cech out, Chelsea will have to rely on Schwarzer (41) for the remainder of this season. (© Daily Telegraph, London)