It’s hard to believe that at the start of last month, Chelsea were knocking on the top spot of the Premier League table and were talked about as a serious title-contender this season. But since the 3-1 win over Leeds United, the Blues have picked up just 8 points from 27 (2 wins, 2 draws, 5 losses), with Frank Lampard ultimately paying the price with his job as well.
Thomas Tuchel’s here now, but a sudden turnaround may not be as realistic as we might all hope. And the Premier League title is obviously long-gone now. After two more points dropped yesterday, the emphasis should be on more realistic targets. Chelsea may only be 11 points off the top even after this run, but as Tuchel points out, there are far too many teams above us to hope for anything more than a top-four finish (which is also a daunting 7 points away after Liverpool’s win over Spurs today). The trophy focus has to be in the cup(s).
“In the end, the club makes this very clear, Chelsea is about results. [...] I am very realistic and I am in a club who’s DNA it is to win and go for trophies. I am here to challenge for every trophy that we play for and it means realistically that this year it is about the Champions League and FA Cup.
“To speak about the Premier League title is not realistic because there are too many teams between us. We will just lose focus if we start here but our job is also about relationships with the club and team, to push everyone to the limit.”
At Chelsea, success will inevitably be defined by wins and trophies, regardless of long-term projects or whathaveyou. But that sort of success on the grand stage can be built with less tangible bits of success as well, and those smaller factors and building blocks are what Tuchel’s focusing on first and foremost. Chelsea are in a rut, and we must first learn to crawl out of it before thinking of anything more significant.
“For us as managers, we always try to bring in performances to develop and improve players, to increase their value through strong performances. [And] success is also the make everyone in the stadium happy, everyone should be excited to come to Stamford Bridge, people should be excited to watch our team and people should feel that the team plays with a special energy and atmosphere.
“These are the soft points of success but in the end, we don’t need to talk a lot because Chelsea play for trophies and titles.”
-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London
Ideally, we have both the soft points and the hard points of success. Right now, I’d be happy with any points.