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‘You can’t be distracted by too many visions and goals that are too far away’

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Keeping focus

FBL-ENG-PR-WEST HAM-CHELSEA Photo by ANDY RAIN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

One of Thomas Tuchel’s main themes since taking over as Chelsea head coach has been to take things one step at a time, to focus on the just the task immediately at hand. This is hardly a revolutionary or unique philosophy, but we saw the stark effects of what happens when we don’t that in both last week’s 0-0 draw against Brighton (when we were distracted by events off the pitch) and the 5-2 defeat to West Brom a couple weeks ago (when we were unable to react properly to going a player down).

And with the big games just piling up one after another these days, that need for a narrow focus has become even more imperative. Tuchel reflected on this situation after yesterday’s narrow yet controlled 1-0 win over West Ham that created a small gap between us in fourth and the rest of the chasing pack in 5-8th.

“You can’t be distracted by too many visions and goals that are too far away. I am very happy with the consistency and quality that we can deliver every three days. We play with courage and it is a really high level that we can produce consistently. This is what we demand for Tuesday in all different set-up, whether FA Cup, league or Champions League.

“We demand the same level which is full focus and to reach your own highest level and to play at that level.”

Fighting for trophies and placement on three fronts is precisely what we want to be doing of course. Ideally, that placement would be higher than fourth place in the league, but that’s a discussion for another day and another season.

West Ham United v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Andy Rain - Pool/Getty Images

That we’re just a win away from an FA Cup and almost as close in the Champions League as well is a testament to the team’s focus and ability to grind out wins these days. But the job is not done.

“All the performances are a benchmark. When we do it now, we want to do it on Tuesday and then Saturday again. This is how we approach our team and how you approach high-level sports.”

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“When you sign up for Chelsea, you sign up to play at the highest level. We have to keep our feet on the ground and work hard. This is what the team feels, they are tired but they feel there are things to improve.

“We are capable to win and don’t forget you need luck in the match, you need to deserve it of course to have the consistency to win matches. I am happy we have reached this crucial stage of the season like this.”

-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London

We have eight games left this season, nine if we reach the Champions League final.

One month to make history. One match at a time.