Chelsea

Chelsea

Premier League • England

‘Welcome to reality’ – Tuchel sets Lukaku straight; talks Rudiger contract, Dembele deal

Steve Pearson
Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel

Thomas Tuchel insisted Romelu Lukaku must get used to being under the microscope at Chelsea, and provided updates on Antonio Rudiger and Ousmane Dembele.

Lukaku has come in for criticism in recent weeks since his one-match exile for ill-advised comments in the Italian press emerged. His own manager also claimed he must do more in the creation of chances for the team.

Now, speaking in his Friday press conference (via Football London), Tuchel was asked whether the Belgian has been unfairly spotlighted.

Tuchel suggested Lukaku had been, though insisted that is nothing new for those at the top of the game.

“Yes, that’s it,” said Tuchel. “Welcome to reality. We are in the spotlight and we are judged on a daily basis, it’s like this. If you are a decisive player.”

Chelsea face Tottenham for the third time this month on Sunday. The two previous clashes came in the EFL Cup semi-final, with the Blues victorious in both legs.

Tuchel admitted: “It is a big rivalry, we know this. We have played them three times in a short period time. They know what we do, and what they do. We have managed to beat them twice and we will try to again.”

Prioritising certain trophies not the Chelsea way – Tuchel

When probed on Chelsea opting to prioritise certain competitions given their squad depth has been stretched, Tuchel declared picking and choosing which trophies to target is not the Chelsea way.

“If you play and work for Chelsea, you give your best on a daily basis,” added Tuchel.

“The moment where you start judging or prioritising is the moment is when you move away from what is being a part of Chelsea.”


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Antonio Rudiger contract update , Ousmane Dembele latest

Attention then turned to the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Antonio Rudiger. The German centre-half bas been simply sensational this season. However, he is out of contract next summer and could sign a pre-contract agreement with an overseas club at any time.

Chelsea are understood to be working hard to tie Rudiger down to fresh terms. Tuchel was asked for an update, and insisted talks are “ongoing” behind the scenes.

He said: “You know how I was full of praise for him, how important he is, I have said many times. Talks and negotiations are ongoing.”

Chelsea want Barcelona trio as mass clear out wanted by Tuchel

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The final subject addressed was Ousmane Dembele. The Barcelona forward is in the midst of a very public dispute with Barcelona at present.

Dembele’s contract expires next summer, and speculation has ramped up a free agent move to England could be on the cards.

Tuchel previously manager Dembele at Borussia Dortmund, and unsurprisingly was asked about Chelsea’s chances of securing a coup.

“He is a very good player at his top level. I am very fortunate to have trained him at Dortmund. It was only one year, should have been longer.

“From there we are not in close contact, we have met here and there with his duties for the French team and I was in Paris. He is in a situation I have no idea why, what it is in detail.

“I know how I feel about it when it is my players so it is better not to talk.”

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