Tuchel urges Chelsea to stop coasting whilst winning

Date published: Wednesday 8th December 2021 9:15 - News Desk

Thomas Tuchel during an interview

Thomas Tuchel has urged his Chelsea side to stop coasting when in the lead following the 3-3 draw at Zenit St Petersburg.

The Blues finished second behind Juventus in Group H thanks to the 94th-minute volley by Magomed Ozdoev.

Chelsea had already secured their slot in the last 16, but twice squandered control in Russia – to take their goals conceded tally to six in two matches.

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A frustrated Tuchel insisted his players were still taking his messages on board, but have fallen into a bad habit of relaxing once ahead in matches.

Chelsea will jump straight from Russia to hosting Leeds in the Premier League on Saturday, where Tuchel will demand standards rise quickly, especially in light of last weekend’s 3-2 defeat at West Ham.

“I won’t take it personally that you make a judgement here that my players are not listening to me, which I don’t find so nice but I leave it with you and your opinion,” said Tuchel.

“I think that we had a very good first 15 minutes and we stopped doing the things we did in the first 15 minutes.

“We were forgetting why we were the better team, because of the investment, the level of concentration, the level of physical investment was high enough to be the better team.

“Once this drops, five, 10 per cent, and it does; once we start managing results and changing our behaviour from what the score is, we get punished at the moment.

“It happened to us at West Ham and it happened again today.

“The reaction was good again, that shows me that it’s not about what we can do, because we can do it.

“Suddenly when we concede two goals we can step up, we can show a reaction. But once we have the lead we give it away again, like also today.

“The last six minutes again we started playing balls back, we started not attacking in the same aggression, the same hunger as before and we got immediately punished, now twice.”

He added: “My analysis is very clear: our behaviour changes when we have a lead and this is something we never did and we should never do.”

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