Chelsea are in danger of falling apart … a few weeks ago they seemed unstoppable, but they could still miss next season’s Champions League
- Leicester took the FA Cup thanks to a goal by Youri Tielemans against Chelsea
- The two teams will play against each other again on Tuesday in a huge clash for the top four
- Thomas Tuchel also has a few huge weeks ahead of the Champions League final
It couldn’t happen, could it? Nine days ago, Chelsea seemed unstoppable – they were in the Champions League final, the FA Cup final and had just moved up to third place after a win over Manchester City, which has since been crowned champions.
Now their season threatens to crumble for them. In many ways, Wednesday’s defeat to Arsenal in the Premier League would have reverberated much deeper than Leicester’s loss in the FA Cup final.
Rightly or wrongly, those in power at Chelsea place much more value on a top four finish than on winning a national cup.
Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger (left) and N’Golo Kante look dejected after FA Cup final
If Thomas Tuchel’s side won at Wembley this weekend, the squad would have shared a £ 1 million bonus pot. If Chelsea beat City in the Champions League final for a week on Saturday, they will split £ 10 million. Chelsea’s priorities are crystal clear.
Tuchel tried his best to ignore claims that the cup defeat against Brendan Rodgers’ side would have a psychological impact on his side as Leicester visits Stamford Bridge on Tuesday in a crucial Premier League game.
“No, absolutely not,” replied the German. Arsenal increased the pressure for the game on Tuesday. Today was a standalone game, it has nothing to do with the race for the top four or the Champions League final. Tuchel is insincere at best.
You wouldn’t be normal if you weren’t bothered about losing a Wembley final. It hurts. It takes time to recover.
In the case of Chelsea, they have had 72 hours to get over it, as they play a match on Tuesday that in Roman Abramovich’s eyes is even bigger than last Saturday’s final. Everything other than the win and the Blues will hand over the initiative to a newly revived Liverpool in the top four race ahead of the final weekend of the season.
The Blues will meet Leicester again on Tuesday and their place in the top four is now under threat
We are going to find out how much Chelsea has grown under Tuchel. Three games, three finals.
You would have backed them up two weeks ago to clean up, but this morning you’re not so sure.
‘If you have a group arriving in the (FA Cup) final, a Champions League final and arriving from ninth to be in the race for the top four, there is no reason to doubt that we are not be strong enough to handle the situation. , ‘Explained Tuchel.
‘We were strong enough to get here so I’m pretty sure we’re strong enough to deal with the situation. But that’s the challenge. Is It Easy? No. But it’s nice because this is what it’s all about. There are many teams who are jealous of our situation, I can tell you that. ‘
He’s right, of course. Tuchel has worked wonders by turning the season around.
And it could still be a memorable year as they beat City for the third time in just over a month on May 29.
Last week’s defeat to Arsenal could prove very costly for the West London club
Saturday’s alternative to losing at Wembley, a defeat in Porto and finishing outside the top four would be unthinkable, however.
Tuchel added, “I hope we’ve built a relationship that goes beyond results. We are not happy with our performance, even though we sometimes win. We are not happy when we lose. ‘But there are aspects in this game against Leicester that we can be absolutely satisfied with.
‘It’s super hard to accept, but there is no team in the world that never loses a final. We are not the first, we are not the last. This is about bouncing back and we will not stop pushing the team.
‘We know very well that this was a different race, now we are going back into the race for the top four.
‘I will not be too concerned with criticism, this is about being positive. What can we improve? How does this feel? What can we learn?
‘This is sport. It’s so hard to accept because you never think of losing a final when you get to it.
But once it does, okay, it’s best to play again on Tuesday. We will now find out who is fit and try to keep the positives and improve on the small details.
‘We need a little luck to change things – we never lied about that. We said when we were constantly winning and that hasn’t changed. ‘
But the skin color of Chelsea’s season is in danger of changing.