Thomas Tuchel criticized Chelsea’s mentality and consistency after his side slumped to a 2-1 defeat against Southampton. The Blues manager believes his side are too easy to beat after conceding two sloppy goals on the south coast to slump to their second Premier League defeat of the season.
Chelsea were poor in the game at St Mary’s Stadium and deserved to lose the game to the hosts. They opened the scoring through Raheem Sterling but bounced back quickly when Saints midfielder Romeo Lavia smashed home. Adam Armstrong won the game for the home side on the stroke of half-time with a powerful strike on the stroke of half-time that deflected off Blues centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly.
Speaking to BT Sport after the game, the German bemoaned his team’s mentality once they had been hooked. He said: “Obviously we struggle with our focus and the consistency of games, it’s not enough to play well for 20 minutes. We did the same at Leeds.
“One thing goes against us and then it’s hard for us to find answers and fight to come back. Things didn’t go our way today and we started to fight and adapt and the situation got out of hand.
“I think it doesn’t take much to beat us. That’s what I don’t like. We’re humble enough to understand that we can lose football games. But we don’t like it and then we try to win every game. But the way we do it changing as fast as possible.”
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The German has also lamented the club’s luck with injuries. Reece James was a notable absentee from the starting line-up after picking up an illness, while key player N’Golo Kante is also currently out. Ruben Loftus-Cheek joined the growing injury list after being withdrawn at half-time with a hamstring injury. Matteo Kovacic replaced the Englishman at half-time, despite having just returned from injury.
“There’s nobody left in midfield,” said the Chelsea manager. “Mateo Kovacic’s recommendation was 20 minutes but he played 45. I also don’t understand why we are in this situation in terms of injuries, but it is so and we need to find solutions.”
The Blues have been struggling for form in front of goal, with Sterling the only member of the front three to score this season.
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The former Borussia Dortmund manager lamented the team’s struggles in front of goal against Southampton, but admitted it was not a new issue.
“It’s a reality,” said the 49-year-old when asked if he was frustrated that Sterling was the only one to score. “It has happened to our offensive players many times. I think in the first 20 minutes we created chances, half chances, but we struggled to score, which is not new for us either. The consequence is that you end up losing the game.”
Tuchel’s men will have the perfect chance to put things right when they take on West Ham in a London derby on Saturday. The club’s form will need to change quickly, otherwise they risk losing ground to their top four rivals.
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