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Every word Thomas Tuchel said ahead of Chelsea's Premier League clash vs Leicester City

Nick Emms

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Every word Thomas Tuchel said ahead of Chelsea's Premier League clash vs Leicester City

Thomas Tuchel addressed the media ahead of Chelsea's Premier League clash with Leicester City on Saturday afternoon.

Chelsea will be looking to bounce back from their dismal 3-0 defeat to Leeds United last weekend at Elland Road. Their unbeaten Premier League start came to an end, but they remain unbeaten at home following the 2-2 draw against Tottenham Hotspur earlier this month.

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is keen to add to his squad, following Sunday's 3-0 defeat to Leeds United. (Image Credit: Alamy)
Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is keen to add to his squad, following Sunday's 3-0 defeat to Leeds United. (Image Credit: Alamy)

Leicester City make the trip to Stamford Bridge on Saturday having not won a league game this term. They drew to Brentford on the opening day before losing to Arsenal at the Emirates. Brendan Rodgers’ side then lost to Southampton last weekend at King Power. 

Tuchel and co will fancy their chances to claim their first win at home this season against the Foxes. 

Here's what the Chelsea head coach had to say on Friday afternoon in full in his pre-match press conference:

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On appeal

“I’m not sure, we are waiting for the response.”

On touchline ban affecting match vs Leicester 

“No, I think I can do the same as always, arrive in the stadium and be in the changing room for sure. I cannot be on the sideline, it seems but we need to wait for the final answer because we responded to the written response. We are waiting for the answer today. I think I can be not on the sideline but in the dressing room and at half-time.”

On response to written reasons for touchline ban

“I think there’s two sides to it. The one side to it is that I got the red card and behaved in a game which is not appropriate and which I regret, but it was out of passion. It was not too aggressive, it was out of passion. I can accept if I get a red card during the match I have a touchline ban and am fined. This is one side to it, I don’t dispute it and accept it. What’s hard to accept is the context. I don’t think I started the aggression, it started earlier. I don’t think I was the only person involved. We both got a red card. A player pulled another player by its hair two minutes earlier. He can play on, he is not banned. For a firm handshake at the end of the match, one coach is banned. This is very hard to accept. It’s hard to accept it. Putting it into context, I cannot understand.

”I don’t say further, you have my opinion on that. In the future there is no comment from me. I will not comment anymore on any referee’s decisions. No matter how big it is, this is obviously what we want and what you get.”

On Wesley Fofana being excluded from Leicester squad

“It’s your job to read into that. It’s not out player. It’s their decision and where it has to stay.”

On how many players Chelsea want to sign

“We have some ideas but maybe nobody comes in. It’s not a long window anymore, it closes soon. The focus is on the things we can influence. Everybody else is not our decision. No matter what we want, there are always several parties involved that have to agree.”

On frame of mind at the moment 

“If you condense it like this, it sounds horrible. The ban comes from the Tottenham game where my mood was very good, was very happy. We are still disappointed with the result, and also with the influence we had to this result, how we influenced it in the wrong way this game. There are several things we can do better, need to do better. It’s not the moment to lose our head, our mood, to get moody, angry and carry that around for too long. It was the pre-season it was. The season starts, we get to know eachother better. I’m not 100% sure how we are, who we are. We are in transition as a club and as a team. We get a clearer view, make decisions for the upcoming matches, make things clearer to us, to me. Then we can transport it to the players to improve because we need to improve. 

“Not only in transfers but in approach to how we play, what we play, where we improve. It is not only about shouting for players. The squad was strong enough to win the match in Leeds and far too strong to lose 3-0. This is where everything starts. The opinions for the transfer has not changed much or at all, we knew for weeks what we have and want to add to the group. I am far too experienced on this job to this level to know not every wish can be fulfilled. We have our own stuff to improve and it sharpens our vision on our own team. This is where the focus is.”

On N’Golo Kante injury 

“We are talking about four weeks plus. I told you at the end of last season he is our key player. He gives something to our team that no other player in the world can give to any other team. That makes him a key player. If your key player is out, it’s a situation you don’t like but have to deal with. It has huge influence.”

On Mateo Kovacic

“He’s back in the group. N’Golo is the only one that did not train now this week so everybody is back in training. Kova is back in the group and ready to play some 20 minutes.”

On boost of Kovacic

“We miss him as a personality, his experience and his quality. It’s maybe 20 minutes at the moment. Was his first training week without reaction in the knee so we cannot rush things otherwise we will just sabotage our own plans with him. We need him long term. It’s good to have him back and as an option on the bench.”

On response after Leeds defeat

“Always, we always see a response. That’s the good thing, we absolutely dislike to lose and as painful as it is to analyse these things and look at it again, it’s necessary, we always get a response. The reasons are obvious, the reasons are clear. We are in a period, the last week, a full week to prepare the match. We used it, in our opinion, as good as possible to get back in shape and install confidence in what we do. We don’t like these things but maybe in a process like this they are necessary to sharpen your vision and have a clear view on where to put the focus. This is what we did. Now we have to compensate the loss of Kalidou Koulibaly and N’Golo Kante. From there we go. The team is hopefully well; prepared and ready to go tomorrow.”

On enjoying transition period

“I always enjoy working with every team. This is the foundation for being a good manager, to enjoy and embrace the team that you have and don’t focus on what you don’t have or could have. If things were different, they are not, they are what they are. I love the group. We speak a lot about transfer window but the good thing about the transfer window when it closes is that you know this is your group, no more distraction or distraction in focus. Also, from the players that struggle with the decisions of ‘Where do I go? Should I go? What do I have to offer? What is my role?” On September 1 things are clear. This will give us a boost to build a strong squad, group and atmosphere within the group that carries us. Basically, I’m enjoying the challenge and enjoying the challenge to build a new group, to be in the Premier League. Everything is fine.”

On whether Antonio Conte should face touchline ban

“My understanding was that we both had our impact in this situation and both got sent off. I can understand that I get a ban, I get a fine. What I don’t understand is that the other coach does not get the same punishment. Is hard to understand for me.”

On why teams have started slowly this season

“I absolutely don’t know but the league gets stronger and stronger. It’s more flexible from the tactics, teams adapt within the matches more and more. We have five changes so there are a lot of tactical twists, huge physical impact. It gets harder and harder to win games in this league.”

On Champions League draw

“I cannot care less about all the other groups! I only care about our group. I think we need to be fast with away tickets because the family of Mateo Kovacic is buying all that we have because it is in Austria, Croatia and his former city when he played for Inter and we are playing AC. I think he is buying all the tickets that are available so this is where the focus is for our players to get tickets for family and friends!

“It is always a difficult group. I have never experienced an easy group in the Champions League. I don’t care about names, which league, if this is our level or not. If we have to we want to go through. I have only experienced difficult group phases even if it looks from outside if it’s easy and clear. These matches are tough. It’s the toughest competition. I am happy I will play against teams and in stadiums I have never played before. From there we go.”

On whether he appealed touchline ban

“Yeah, we answered. We wait for the final answer but I don’t think it will change something. In the moment I think I will be banned from the touchline. That’s it. We are trying to have the best solution which we will have, it will not be an excuse.”

On adapting to Kante absence

“It’s difficult to replace him, he’s very unique. We were full of hope after pre-season because we built his pre-season very individual. He had a long pre-season, a good pre-season, felt good. Since many years he felt very strong, getting enough rest and build-up to be the player he can be for us. We started with one game a week so the hopes were high that he can play consistently for us. If we build another system, I don’t know. We have trust in our players. It will maybe be the same system. We played many games, unfortunately, without him in the same structure. It will be slightly different because every player is a bit different. That is the challenge to adapt to this, use different players differently. To change completely because N’Golo is not there, I don’t think so.”

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Chelsea, Thomas Tuchel, Premier League, Leicester City

Nick Emms
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