‘Challenging’ – Tuchel explains why Chelsea flopped in pre-season

Photo: Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Chelsea had a mixed pre-season, as the team’s performance during the tour of America was far from impressive.

A 4-0 defeat to Arsenal showed that the team wasn’t ready for the new campaign.

Thomas Tuchel has admitted that he found the summer challenging due to his activities in the transfer market.

According to the Chelsea manager, he left much of the team’s training and tactical sessions to his assistants, while he worked with Todd Boehly to seal transfer deals.

“Frustrating is the wrong word but it was challenging and demanding time-wise,” Tuchel said of the summer.

“I was sometimes involved in things where I did not spend too much time normally before. My day is only 24 hours so sometimes I needed to rely on my staff to do preparations for training.

“I spent a lot of time with our new owners to align our thoughts and ideas, to discuss and re-discuss our opinions. I can do my job but some extra stuff came to it. With every day, we know each other better and the communication gets clearer.”

Since returning from the USA tour, Chelsea have played two friendly games against Udinese, and Tuchel has had time to work with the group in Cobham.

Tuchel has now admitted that the team has gained ground and is ready for the new season.

“We are some steps further ahead,” he added.

“It was absolutely necessary, maybe it was also necessary to lose that game how we lost it against Arsenal, one of our big rivals in the league who is trying to take our place.

“It was a wake-up call for everybody and since then we stepped up. As always, the last week before the season is always the time where you feel a new focus and excitement, the legs are fresher.

“I think we’re not where we can be but let’s see. We feel ready and competitive for tomorrow. We had a very good training week so far and the atmosphere is back to where it was before the Arsenal game in the first weeks of pre-season.”

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