Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea are facing the semi-finals in the Champions League. Timo Werner and Kai Havertz still fall short of expectations.
Thomas Tuchel was not exuberant when he knocked loudly on the gate to the Champions League semi-finals with Chelsea. “We are happy, but not too happy,” said the German team manager of the Blues. 2-0 (1-0) against FC Porto in the quarter-final first leg: Actually that would be a reason to smile, but Tuchel had only just experienced in the league how fast the wind can turn – and his German storm duo is doing continue to worry.
Timo Werner and Kai Havertz were supposed to put Porto in trouble with their speed, but they actually hung in the air for 65 minutes. Until Tuchel had mercy and replaced them. “I know it was a difficult match for Timo and Kai. They didn’t have their best day,” said the coach after the game. Havertz on the wrong nine and Werner on the left number ten suffered from Chelsea’s generally deficient attacking game.
The blues were lucky that Mason Mount (32nd) and Ben Chilwell (85th) took the only two big chances. And provided the 2012 premier class winner with a brilliant starting position for the second leg, which will take place on Tuesday (9 p.m. /DAZN) because of Corona how the first duel is played in Seville. Then Chelsea could be among the top four in Europe for the first time since 2014. “The job is only half done – we are aware of that,” said Tuchel, who was satisfied with the reaction of his team to the setback at the weekend.
But just like the 5-2 defeat by West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League on Saturday was not the inexplicable and embarrassing slump that has been described in many places in England, the European Cup night on Wednesday was not the glorious resurrection.
Chelsea: form crisis at Havertz and Werner? Tuchel makes the team responsible
The first bankruptcy under Tuchel against West Brom was directly related to an early expulsion. The common thread that continued in the Porto game, however, was the toothless attack.
Chelsea have had trouble creating chances in most games since Tuchel took office in January. The great strength is the defense around national player Antonio Rüdiger. The quality of the squad, which was enormously strengthened in the summer with the addition of Werner, Havertz and Hakim Ziyech, should normally also produce spectacular moments at the front. But even against Porto, Chelsea were rarely dangerous in the opposing penalty area. Havertz and Werner hardly received any useful feeds. Tuchel saw responsibility for this with the entire team.
“We have lost the connection between the seven players in the depths and the top three,” said the 47-year-old: “It was difficult for us to get into the box and find the right rhythm.” To shine in such a game would have been so important for Havertz (no hit under Tuchel) and especially Werner (one hit under Tuchel). The former Leipzig had to be publicly defended by his coach after his miss in the national team the previous week. Ultimately, only goals will silence the critics.