Long-time readers of the site will no doubt be familiar with our slowly expanding series called Encyclopaedia Thibautica. We are now in Volume III, seeing as how this is Courtois's third year with the club (following three seasons on loan at Atlético Madrid after signing from Genk). In Volume I, Courtois announced himself as a worthy successor to the decade-long rule of Petr Čech in the Chelsea goal. In Volume II, those credentials took a bit of a hit, as did the credentials of many of his teammates. Now, in Volume III, everyone seems to be back on top.
Courtois has often been the bystander during this current ten-match winning streak, but on Wednesday, he certainly earned his wages. He had already made a great stop on
Jermain Defoe Adnan Januzaj earlier in the second half, but he saved his best for the very last. As Patrick van Aanholt took his volley through a double screen of Chelsea players, I'm sure the Sunderland fans behind the goal weren't the only ones thinking that it was going in.
But then, a flying right hand appeared out of nowhere and the three points were preserved. Back-to-back clean sheets for Chelsea and Courtois' Europe-leading ninth of the season.
Previous Encyclopaedia Thibautica entries:
.1: David Nugent (Leicester City)
.2: Kevin Mirallas (Everton)
.3: Adam Lallana (Liverpool)
.4: triple save (Hull City)
.1: James Morrison (WBA)
.2: Ander Herrera (Manchester United)
.1: Divock Origi (Liverpool)
.2: Patrick van Aanholt (Sunderland)