Chelsea are having a bit of a blip. It’s not a Thanos-sized blip. It’s just three games, not five years. Watford, West Ham, Zenit. One win, one draw, one defeat. Four leads given up. Many injuries, even more fitness concerns. It feels worse than it is.
Fortunately, those feelings can be turned around quickly. The issues are not deep-seated. At least Thomas Tuchel believes so. We just need to get the details right again, and get back to the business of winning.
“If you have the lead four times in two matches and you escape with one point and six goals conceded, it’s not the moment to look away and pretend nothing’s happening. [But] the performances are not horrible, the performances are not bad. They are in some moments average, and average looks kind of horrible when you play and work for Chelsea.
“This can happen, and it’s good that it feels like this because we want to compete on the highest level.”
Chelsea’s well-rotated lineup and entirely makeshift midfield laid a bit of an egg on Wednesday, but we do get Jorginho back for tomorrow’s contest against Leeds United. Jorgi himself has had a few oopsies lately, but hopefully he can stabilize the situation a bit better this time.
And things are potentially looking up in the near future, with N’Golo Kanté expected back in training next week, alongside perhaps Trevoh Chalobah (as reported earlier this week) and Mateo Kovacic coming back out of isolation.
“Trevoh Chalobah is still out, Mateo Kovacic obviously out for tomorrow, [and] N’Golo Kante and Ben Chilwell. [Jorginho] did the last two training sessions, and I think he will do what he did the last games, play through pain and do what’s needed to be on the pitch.”
“...and we hope [Kanté] comes back on Tuesday to team training.”
But for now, it’s Jorginho and someone else. Maybe Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who was not mentioned by the head coach after missing Wednesday’s game with an injury picked up in warm-ups?
As ever, regardless of who plays, we must give 100 per cent.
“[These last three games] in general, even on the sideline we maybe felt a bit too safe, that it is enough to play OK and invest on a 90 per cent level and escape with maximum output.
“[We have to go back] to invest everything and not be sure what the outcome would be. We have to go back there so to make ready that we invest in the details as a group, a team, that we invest more and not only by running and sprinting but also with concentration, focus and support that we stay in these matches and make sure we are decisive.
“We cannot gamble on it, be sure about it, hope for it, that’s not us and we should not go backwards and adjust our behaviour from the scoreboard. We are more than happy to take the risk, invest everything and see what the outcome is. We are happy to take these risks.
“[We] need to be strong individually, need to be very strong in connections of two-three players. This is how we can impose our quality. This is what you need to do against his teams, against Leeds. It will not stop until you are in the shower so we need to be ready for that from first to last minute.”
-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London
Clear eyes; full hearts.