Skip to main content
Publish date:

Every Word Thomas Tuchel Said Ahead of Chelsea's Champions League Clash With Malmo


Thomas Tuchel addressed the media ahead of Chelsea's Champions League clash with Malmo on Wednesday night.

The Blues will be looking for victory to help them take another step into qualification for the round of 16.

As things stand, Chelsea are second in Group H on goal difference, three points behind Juventus.

Here's what the Chelsea boss had to say in full in his pre-match press conference:

sipa_35594364 (1)

On Kai Havertz's form:

"That's a fact, he does everything to reach his level again. We do  everything to help him, he's an important player for our squad. He started strong in the season, in pre-season. The story hasn't change. He lacks the statistics of decisive things, of goals and assists. He needs to fight his way back into the team when he gets minutes. This can happen any time, we trust and believe in him. The rest has to come for him, he is willing to do so. He is in a good shape, a good mental state. He knows what he's fighting for. That's the situation."

On changing shape and formation:

"Yes and no. We are thinking about it. Is it really a tactical thing? Does it have less value that we are a difficult team to play against than a team that scores easy three goals? Is this the right step to take? We can take this step when it is right, in the moment. We can add more offensive players. This game is about balance, we found the balance. The main point is that we stay active no matter what structure we play. The guys help eachother on the field and we can create chances in any kind of structure. We think about everything but you have to find the right moment. There are a lot of reasons to stay in our structure and increase and improve our behaviour in our structure. It is important to stay active and aggressive . We can also score from counter attacks, from ball wins. It is not only about creating chances against an opponent defending deep. A lot of teams defend deep against us it is difficult. One solution could be to change formation, put more offensive players. Let's see."

On Tuchel's relationship to Swedish football:

"I remember a very nice holiday in Stockholm for three or four days. A beautiful hotel, a beautiful city. It was a vrey relaxing holiday. Very inspiring city, open minded people. In general, Scandanavian style of living and of thinking outside the box is very impressive. This is something you feel in the approach in sport, when you play Danish and Swedish teams. You feel they are confident and not shy of trying new ways to reach their personal best level. This is always inspiring. We are well prepared, we have prepared already our team. They deserve full respect. We show full respect to everybody that plays against us."

On potential threats by Malmo:

Read More

"They are a team which play with a lot of confidence, their own style. They trust what they are doing. Maybe they are not used to the highest level, that's why maybe they struggle at the beginning of the group phase because the league in Sweden is not the same level like Champions League. They have a certain style, they trust their style. They feel confident with that. We should not underestimate. We should respect them like we respect every team. We need to be on our top level. It is a very successful coach, as a player too. Individually they are good. They can hurt you any minute if you are not awake."

On players adjusting to Romelu Lukaku:

"This will increase everyday. We are in the process of adapting to eachother. In the very moment, my opinion is that I feel Romelu is overplayed. He played too many competitions over the summer, with the national team and now the Nations League. He is a fantastic athlete and such a competitve guy that he digs in deep and wants to win these things. He wants to be out there and win. I know how much he wanted to have a good outcome in the European Championship with Belgium. Now again in Nations League, it was a huge match for him personally. It meant a lot for him, means a lot for him to play for his country. If it doesn't go well, he puts it on his shoulders. He thinks about it, he reflects about it. I feel him a bit tired mentally. Not hugely that we have a concern. For me, he does not fully enjoy without having second and third thought. For me he is overplayed a little bit. Once he finds his rhythm, things easier. It is difficult to judge if he needs a break, if we should keep him on the pitch. For me it is the same for Mason and Jorgi, they struggle. They have a lot of weight to carry for their countries. They take it, they love it. "f you play 1,000 matches a year, it can become heavy! Also, they love the game. They are such good guys. This is what I feel."

On team news:

"That is easy, it is only Christian Pulisic who is missing. tomorrow."

On what he has done with his UEFA Coach of the Year Award

"I don't have room for this. It is not in my office. I don't have room for this at home. I love my work on every day basis, that does not change if I get a trophy. I am grateful I got it. It is unbelievable to have this but I will not change my opinion on this."

On amount of games that players are playing:

"From our players, yeah I think we lack a little bit of form. We lack a bit of enthusiasm in the last percent. One big reason is that we play too much. Not we as the club, but the players. I am a big friend of quality and not quantity. This is the sitaution right now. It is what we are facing. This is nothing new. The next national break is coming, it is coming soon. It will not change. On the opposite, in January or February we have another competition to play in. We can look a bit stiff, a bit harder than it should be. We are talking about Premier League, the toughest league in the world. There is not shame in having a tight match in Brentford. There is no shame we need a late winner against Southampton. It is important we don't feel ashamed and be too critical of ourselves. We fight through the hard moments. We want to be a team nobody likes to play against. We are on a good way, from there we try to improve. Will it ever feel easy? I'm not sure it feels easy for any team in the Premier League. We have to embrace the situation that it's difficult. We find ways to win games, we need to improve. We lack a bit of form, freshness and joy. For me the key reason is not the mentality, attitude but what you said. We are coming from travels, coming from planes. If you travel through time zones, are in a hotel, then change the hotel. It is easy said. You are one day at home, see your family, then you are back to the hotel. You play Brentford then the next one is Champions League. It can be tiring and I can only repeat it. I am a big friend of quality and the quality players need to be in shape because the spectators want to see the best players in the best shape. This is simply too much football and too many competitions."

On Christian Pulisic's injury:

"He got injured during a match with the USA. It was a foul, a tough foul and he hurt his ankle. There is nothing to worry in terms of that we are hiding details. I cannot give you all the details because I am not a doctor. He has setbacks from pain, not major injury or complication, just pain in the ankle that disturbs him. Once these players with quick movements like Christian feel this pain and aren't free in the movement, the recovery isn't happening so you have to start over again. Once the pain comes back you have to do a little pause then start all over again. Right now, we are very very close. He was so close to come to team training last week but had a setback with pain. Nothing serious but serious pain. From there on we go. He is very impatient, he does everything. We see him suffer in every meeting. He is really suffering, he wants to be on the pitch and help us. Unfortunately, the injury takes it's time."

Follow Absolute Chelsea on: Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube