Premier League • England

Thomas Tuchel paints grim picture on Chelsea confidence as boss bemoans Zagreb loss by declaring: ‘Everything is missing’

Thomas Tuchel speaks to the media during a Chelsea Press Conference ahead of their UEFA Champions League Group E match against Dinamo Zagreb at Maksimir Stadion

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel admits his team are way below their best after seeing them lose their Champions League opener 1-0 at Dinamo Zagreb, and conceding: “Everything is missing.”

The Blues have been in rotten form on their travels in recent weeks, losing at Leeds and Southampton. And their away-day Achilles appeared again as they were punished again by a solitary strike from Mislav Orsic. He outpaced £70m man Wesley Fofana – and at half-time, Joe Cole was far from impressed.

A better second-half display saw Chelsea turn the screw a little, but there was no way through. Indeed, the hosts’ defence held firm with Reece James’ shot off the post late on the nearest they came.

Assessing the result, Tuchel admitted he has serious concerns about his players.

“It’s an underperformance from us. I need to say sorry like always. We had an OK start but we did not take our half chances. It was there to put to bed in the first 15, 20 minutes. But we concede one on the counter-attack and from there it was far too easy.

“There is too much to analyse. I am a part of it. But I am angry at myself, I am angry out our performance. It is on me, it is on us. It is up to me to find solutions. At the moment, everything is missing!”

Peter Crouch and Cole picked out three stars who under-performed for Chelsea as they also assessed claims that Tuchel is a man under pressure.

However, the German added: “I will not talk about individuals today. We win as a team, we lose as a team.”

Thomas Tuchel cancels Chelsea day off

Asked if his team are struggling to gel and how many are at the top of their game, Tuchel offered a bleak response.

“Not a lot at the moment. It’s obvious that we underperform individually. I don’t know where this performance today comes from.

“It’s a lack of hunger, intensity, a lack of determination to win duels to actually do the things on the highest level. You cannot expect to win games, not in the Premier League or Champions League. We are not where we want to be.”

Asked if Dinano Zagreb surprised him, Tuchel refused to accept that as a reason.

“Me personally not, but if we did we have a huge problem. I think it would be a much better atmosphere if we had all the stands full.

“The atmosphere was not key in making us underperform, it was a good atmosphere but with one stand completely clear, it was an advantage for us.”

Chelsea next face Fulham in the Premier League on Saturday lunchtime. That trip to Craven Cottage will be a chance for the Blues to put right their bleak away form.

Tuchel, though, insists there will be no rest day for his players as they look to return to winning ways and amid a question about cancelling a day off.

“There is no day off in the planning and there cannot be a day off,” he replied bluntly.

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