After receiving a thrashing at the hands of West Brom last weekend, Chelsea bounced back with an impressive result in the first leg of the Champions League Quaterfinals against Porto. Focus shifts once again in the Premier League as Chelsea, placed 5th on the table, take on Crystal Palace away at Selhurst Park tomorrow.
Tuchel expects the team to take confidence from the win in midweek to push positively towards making the top four come the end of the season. It's about taking one game at a time, one challenge at a time.
"It gives us no advantage we have a 2-0 lead against Porto when we play against Crystal Palace.
"It can give you a huge boost in self-confidence. Tomorrow is not the day to fulfil all our obstacles and reach our goals. Tomorrow is 90 minutes. You just have to focus for 90 minutes. We don’t have to think about Tuesday and Man City."
"We have to start over and over again, and this is the challenge. It’s very important we are fully focused on every challenge we have, forget the games and results we had, accept every new challenge and raise new challenges right from the start.
Tuchel once again declared a fully fit squad for the London derby tomorrow. Kante and Pulisic came on as subs against Porto and played out good amount of minutes to bring back their match fitness which puts them in a good position to contribute from the start in the upcoming games.
A top team like Chelsea will always be involved in several competitions simultaneously and Tuchel will look to implement his squad management skills to navigate the fixtures ahead while picking up results.
"We do it step by step and we can rely with full fitness, we arrive without big injuries, hopefully it stays like this.
"We can defend as a team and we can rely on our solidarity and strong bond on the pitch and the hard defensive work hopefully gives us a big amount of self-confidence to go through all these steps."
‘There are teams waiting for us who play a little bit less, but we need to accept it and rely on ourselves. The main target is finding a good balance between recovery, training and then being focused on taking it step by step.’
- Thomas Tuchel; source: Chelsea FC
There's been a lot of noise surrounding the Striker situation at Chelsea and several European names have been linked. One such noise revolves around Tammy's contractual situation that expires in a couple of years from now.
Tammy's last appearance for Chelsea came back in February against Southampton in the league where he was hooked at half time. Tuchel explains the Striker's exclusion as a mixture of bad timing of his injuries as well as tactical adjustment where Tammy falls short to meet expectations. There's belief that Tammy's hardwork in training and fixture congestion will open up some minutes but it looks like an uphill task at the moment.
"Yes and no. No just for the fact I can't make my decisions based on the personal goals of my players. Kepa also has the personal goal to go with Spain. It's good they have these goals but it never influences my decisions. I'm the coach for Chelsea and I have to do what is good and best for us. Tammy had a bit of a rough time. He started twice or three times and was twice substituted for tactical reasons at half-time. He could not have the impact he demands from himself and we wish from him.
"Then he was injured and lost a bit the connection and possibility to fight for his place in the squad. The squad has played very well without him, we've had a lot of results without him. Now we're in the decisive part of the season where it's not so easy to bring players who are injured into the shape. We have only three changes, which is a big, big thing. It's a big handicap because three changes most of the time means you only have two because the last one is one you don't want to lose too early. So circumstances are not easy but it's on Tammy to do everything possible to let him out.
"We have a full squad now. We have 22 players on the training pitch and it's very, very hard to select the 18 players for Premier League matches. We can only change three times but in the offensive position it is always part to have a huge impact in only some minutes. This is very different to the situation of Kepa. Nothing has changed. We demand a lot of Tammy, he demands a lot of himself. And he is using every minute to convince us that he needs to be on the pitch. From there we go on and every three days there is a match. Hopefully he stays fit and plays a key role in the end of the season."
- Thomas Tuchel; source: football.london
As always the priority remains picking up points and achieving club objectives first and foremost. A win tomorrow is exactly what's needed.