Aberdeen FC this evening confirmed goalkeeper Tomas Cerny has left the Club.
The 35-year-old, who joined the Dons in the summer of 2018, has confirmed he will now retire from professional football.
Tomas sat down and spoke to RedTV in length about his long career in the game.
He started his career at Aberdeen’s one time European opponents Sigma Olomouc in 2002 in the Czech Republic, the country of his birth. The shot stopper then joined Hamilton Accies, arriving in 2007 and staying for five years. He built up a very good reputation for himself and was signed by Bulgarian club CSKA Sofia and then Greek Super League club Ergotelis. The keeper then returned to Scotland for a short spell with Hibernian before joining Partick Thistle in June 2015.
“The game has changed massively during my career. From where it was when I started, to what it is like now, and to where it is heading; it has changed and it will continue to change.
“To be completely honest there were parts of the game that I found difficult to adjust to. There are certain things that you do automatically. If you don’t learn them from a young age it is difficult to adjust. For example, for a goalkeeper the use of the ball has completely changed since I was young and the expectation put on keepers. Even when I first arrived in Scotland, you got the ball and you kicked it long. There was very little emphasis on build up play or being that 11th player and taking part in that position for the 90 minutes by making yourself available to take short passes.
“That is something I had to change and had to adjust to and there is no doubt it is the biggest difference. It is a different role and something all the top teams in the world have. They demand their keepers have to be as good as any outfield player on the pitch. As they are the last player, they can’t afford to make a mistake now with their hands or their feet. You can’t just give the ball away with a stray pass. So there are high demands places on goalkeepers but I think it is exciting for young keepers coming into the game. There are a lot of new things to consider and to learn but there is also more appreciation for the role. That appreciation has grown over the years as to how import goalkeepers are.
“I have been fortunate enough to have had so many wonderful memories in the game.
“It is therefore very difficult to pick out one game as my favourite. At each club there were some special moments. In Greece I remember playing against Olympiakos, there were a few special games for Hamilton, at Partick Thistle when we secured a top six finish I felt that I played extremely well and helped the team. And I will always remember my last ever game, at Easter Road for Aberdeen.
“One would have to be the European U19 Championship in 2003 when I was playing for the Czech Republic and we played England. I was about 18 then. It was the last game of the group and we had to win by three goals to give us a chance of getting to the semi-finals. And we won 3-0! My cleansheet was the difference between us qualifying. I did well personally. It was the first really big game I had played in. England had the likes of Liam Ridgewell, Wayne Routledge and Stewart Downing in their side. So that was fairly special. We lost narrowly 1-0 to Italy in the semi’s so we got a bronze medal.”