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Kalidou Koulibaly 'Feels At Home' At Chelsea And Reveals Previous Thomas Tuchel Phone Call

Nick Emms

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Kalidou Koulibaly 'Feels At Home' At Chelsea And Reveals Previous Thomas Tuchel Phone Call

Kalidou Koulibaly has admitted that Chelsea feels like home to him after Thomas Tuchel called him to sell a move to Stamford Bridge.

The 31-year-old arrived for £34 million, departing Napoli after eight years in the Serie A.

Tuchel was in desperate need of central defenders, having lost both Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen last summer, while Cesar Azpilicueta could still join Barcelona before the end of the summer transfer window.

The German previously hinted at Koulibaly’s involvement for Chelsea against Charlotte FC on Thursday, with the Senegal international potentially making his first appearance for the club during their pre-season tour of the United States. 

Jorginho and Kalidou Koulibaly at Napoli. (Alamy)
Jorginho and Kalidou Koulibaly at Napoli. (Alamy)

He revealed: "We are a bit torn. I have to speak to him to see what we do tomorrow, we will decide later. He is on a very individual programme, he trains with the team.

"As you can imagine we have players in the third week of preparation, with completely different physical foundation. It is not a good match for him to start with the team.

"I don't want to rule it out but it is very likely he will not play tomorrow. 

"I am happy because he is a calm guy and you can see his quality, leadership. He has a certain personality that you feel when he is there."

With the Blues head coach happy by his arrival, Koulibaly admitted that he is also pleased to be at Stamford Bridge, having discussed a move to Chelsea back in 2016.

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Speaking to Chelsea’s official website, he said: "I am really excited to be here. I was looking forward to being with the team. I was in London three days ago. I was excited to be in this city, to play for this club.

"I want to thank the staff, the coach who wanted me, the boss. Everybody was really nice with me. I feel home."

The defender then continued to discuss the importance of Tuchel and his role in bringing him to Chelsea, revealing that the German called him in the past.

“It was a really important detail for me. He called me and say he wanted me absolutely to come to Chelsea. I was really happy because we know him from Paris,” he said.

Kalidou Koulibaly taking in the sights of Las Vegas after his Chelsea arrival. (Chelsea FC)
Kalidou Koulibaly taking in the sights of Las Vegas after his Chelsea arrival. (Chelsea FC)

Koulibaly continued to reveal that this was not the first time that Tuchel reached out, having contacted the defender soon after he was appointed as Chelsea head coach.

“When he came to Chelsea he direct called me and asked if I wanted to come. It didn’t happen before but today it comes,” he continued.

“I know he is a good man, a very good trainer. I am looking forward to working with him. I will do my best for him to be happy with me.”

Koulibaly will be hoping to hit the ground running at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea prepare for the new season.

Featured Image Credit: Chelsea FC

Topics: Chelsea, Kalidou Koulibaly, Thomas Tuchel, Football, Premier League, Napoli

Nick Emms
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