Tuchel sends stern message to star whom Chelsea ‘demand a lot of’

Date published: Friday 9th April 2021 2:24 - Samuel Bannister

Reece James, Billy Gilmour, Tammy Abraham, Chelsea

Tammy Abraham faces a tough battle to regain his place at Chelsea, manager Thomas Tuchel has admitted.

Chelsea gained massive momentum while the England striker was out injured. Abraham has only just shaken off a niggling ankle problem suffered in the 2-0 Premier League win over Newcastle on February 15. And Chelsea have lost just once in Tuchel’s 15 matches in charge, with Abraham missing the bulk of those games.

Academy graduate Abraham remains Chelsea’s top scorer in all competitions this term with 12 goals. Mason Mount has topped the charts under new manager Tuchel.

“Tammy had a bit of a rough time because twice he was substituted at half-time for tactical changes,” said Tuchel.

“So he could not have the impact that he demands from himself, we wish from him and he can clearly give for us.

“Then he got injured and the squad played very well without him. Now suddenly we enter the decisive part of the season where it’s not so easy to bring players who were injured into the shape or to let them play.

“We have only three substitutes which is a big, big thing, a big handicap.

“Because three substitutes means you only most of the time have two changes, because you don’t want to lose the third one too early.

“But it’s on Tammy to do everything to make it impossible to leave him out. It’s very, very hard to select the 18 players for Premier League matches.”

Chelsea will face Crystal Palace in Saturday’s Premier League clash at Selhurst Park. Tuchel is able to select from a full-strength squad, but Abraham could find himself outside the starting XI once again.

All of Chelsea’s forwards are struggling for goals despite the Blues’ fine run under their new German boss. £53million summer recruit Timo Werner has struck just twice in 33 games for club and country since November.

A clutch of Premier League clubs are understood to be keen on a summer move for Abraham, with West Ham among that nucleus of suitors.

Tuchel doing ‘what’s best for Chelsea’

Thomas Tuchel Chelsea boss

Tuchel conceded he cannot help the 23-year-old advance his claims for an England place. But the Blues’ new boss still believes Abraham can have a big impact on the end of Chelsea’s season.

Asked if he could give Abraham a helping hand in his battle to make England’s European Championships squad, Tuchel replied: “So, yes and no.

“No just for the fact that I cannot make my decision based on personal goals for players. But yes because it’s important and we want our players to have those personal goals.

“Kepa has also the personal goal to play for Spain; this is good but this can never influence my decisions. I have to do what’s best for Chelsea.

“However, in the offensive positions it’s always possible to have a huge impact in only some minutes.

“And nothing has changed. We demand a lot of Tammy and he demands a lot of himself, and he is using every minute to convince us he needs to be on the pitch. And so we go on.

“Hopefully he stays fit and will play a key role in the end of the season.”

READ MOREMajor rift with Tuchel, Chelsea staff has ‘soft touch’ Chelsea star in danger

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