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Every Word Thomas Tuchel Said Ahead of Chelsea's Premier League Clash With Watford

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

Chelsea remain top of the league despite dropping two points at home to Manchester United on Sunday following a 1-1 draw. 

They will hope to get back to winning ways at Vicarage Road to ensure they maintain their position at the top. 


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

On team news:

“With Romelu it is pretty easy. He came on and he continued to train. There is no reaction from his injured ankle so he stayed in training and is ready to progress in minutes. For the game, for sure out is for sure Chilly, N’Golo and Kova. Some players are in doubt, need more time and examinations, to re-evaluate the status. That is Reece James, Jorgi and Timo Werner. They all trained today with us but there will be some last minute decisions about the three.”

On Ballon d’Or and Chelsea achievements:

“It’s a nice award because it is a team effort. If you are successful and individual players shine. All our players and the women’s players deserve to be on that list for their contribution to the success. If individual players shine, it is always due to team effort. That’s why it is a nice award. We have a strong academy, a strong women's team. We want to be a strong part of this club. Full credit to the owner and everybody in charge. We are trying our best to continue and maybe win this award (Club of the Year) again.”

On fixture schedule:

“It is challenging. The good thing is, it was challenging before so we don’t change our routine. We have a very close and tight communication with the fitness and medical department. We try to predict the load. We look into the data with where the players are, who is overloaded, chronically overloaded and underloaded and from there we see what we need in the next games. We do it step by step. If you look at the schedule too far ahead, you can see that it will be some tough weeks coming. That’s why we focus on the details and focus on the next game and maybe the next two games where we can rely on our predictions because we have fantastic support. It is on the players now to not only be strong in the games and give everything but to take recovery very seriously. We have to be in the next weeks very good in recovering and sleeping and taking the right food and right supplements that we can recover well from the games because the games are intense. Our style of play is hopefully intense and needs to be intense to have a certain mentality and identity on the pitch. This is what we want and we are not scared to rotate. We have some doubts with Reece, Jorginho and Timo Werner. We have late decisions. We trust the full squad and it is no secret we need the full squad to overcome weeks like this.”

On Claudio Ranieri:

“We see a difference in datas, in the style of the games since he joined the club. They play with more confidence, especially at home. They try to implement high pressing. They are very active, they try to be brave and courageous. They had a great result against Man United. They try to play emotional, more emotions and more effort to have the crowd behind them. They can create an atmosphere that helps them. We see this. Claudio Ranieri speaks for himself, what he did in the Premier League. He had so many clubs, such an experienced coach. It is a pleasure to meet him. It is the first time I’ll meet him in person and play against him. We will do our best to get the three points tomorrow. This is the aim.”

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On Ballon d’Or motivation:

“For me personally, not so much. I have huge doubts about individual awards in this game. The game is very complex, it is related to a lot of luck and it is a team effort. You can not, one single player can not win a match of football. It is simply not possible. That is why I am happy when I have the chance to work at the club with so many nominees, such a strong academy, strong women's team. It shows the ambition of the club, shows the target. This is what drives us, what makes us happy and what motivates us. We don’t do what we do to have in the end individual awards. When you have a lot of nominees, get a prize like this yesterday, it is the proof that we showed what the club is all about, how the club is built. It’s on us, on me and everybody who works in this club to drive things forward.”

On who he expected to win the Ballon d’Or:

“I take my right to not have an opinion on this one. We have ourselves a player who won all major trophies and was hugely involved, so would not have been a surprise if he lifted the trophy. It was a choice, I think it’s election. It’s elected. You have to take it, if you like it or not you accept it. Life goes on pretty easy after yesterday.”

On Jorginho not winning the Ballon d’Or:

“My players were surprised that Lewandowski didn’t win last year. There are some surprises in it. It is an election. In the end, we come from sports. We accept and go on.”

On Club World Cup:

“As I understand it, they will both (Edouard Mendy and Hakim Ziyech) be back (from the African Cup of Nations) even if they play in the final. They will both be in Abu Dhabi I guess. Listen, this is in February. We are now close to being in December. There is still December and January to play. My focus is on Watford, the selection, the rotation. My head is also what we did against Man United. We look a bit up front because now we have evening games and Saturday we have a 12:30 away game. We need to be aware of the lack of time of recovery in between. This is what we do. There are zero focus on World Cup right now..”

On left wing-back options:

“We have (enough cover). We have Marcos who started the season with us when Chilly was in a more difficult moment. We trust him, we won Premier League games. Marcos is very experienced. It is the situation where even if nobody is injured you have two specialists for one position.They both play for their national teams where you can end up sometimes in very difficult decisions. It can be very hard for one of them. In my opinion, they compete for one single position in the left wing-back position. If one suddenly has a longer injury like Ben now, it can seem we don’t have enough. If we look at the schedule it can be like ‘can Marcos now play eight matches every three days?’. Maybe not. We still have Callum who can play on the left side as a wing-back. We have other options we can maybe try. Marcos is the one in charge for now. He is the specialist. He can prove how much he can bring to the team and what impact he can have for us.”

On attacking players needing to be more clinical:

“I think they try hard. Their contribution to our style of game, to the high pressing, is immense. We can see this in every game live but also the datas after the matches. We should maybe take into account that when they arrive with the chances, they don’t arrive fully relaxed. Sometimes they breathe hard when they arrive. Maybe that causes us a bit of precision sometimes but we scored many goals before. This game (against Manchester United) I agree. We had a similar game in terms of chances and result against Burnley at home. It is also a good sign when we are not happy to draw against Man United. We have the feeling we deserve more. We trust them. They have the quality to score for us. It is on us to bring them in positions where it is possible for them to score and to do this as often as possible and maybe more often if it is a moment where they find it a bit harder. We need to create the chances because they have the quality and absolutely want. They have a huge impact to our defensive game and the high pressing. That’s why in general we are absolutely happy and calm.”

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