The manager of Chelsea football club, Thomas Tuchel, has admitted that his team is too “soft” and easy to beat after Southampton stunned them 2-1 at St Mary’s on Tuesday, August 30, 2022.
During the said match, Chelsea took the lead in the 23rd minute courtesy of the club’s new signing Raheem Sterling. Five minutes after, Southampton equalized in the 28th minute thanks to Romeo Lavia. In injury time of the first half, Adam Armstrong gifted Southampton the lead.
Throughout the second half, it was Southampton players who bullied Chelsea players and had better goalscoring opportunities than the Blues. But they could not convert their chances which forced the game to end 2-1 in favor of the Saints.
The two goals Southampton scored against Chelsea on Tuesday made it eight goals the club has conceded in five Premier League games despite spending a total of €103.30 million on signing defenders so far this summer.
Recall that the departure of Antonio Rüdiger to Real Madrid and Andreas Christensen to FC Barcelona earlier this summer forced Chelsea to pay €38million for the services of 31-year-old Kalidou Koulibaly. Chelsea didn’t stop there, they paid €65.30million for the services of 24-year-old Marc Cucurella.
Despite these A-list recruits, Chelsea have suffered two defeats and a draw in just five Premier League games. Their sloppy performance so far this season has forced them down to the 8th spot on the league table with seven points in five games.
Chelsea’s revamped defense has been so terrible that the club has not kept a clean sheet in their last four games. Also, the club’s attack has been so terrible that only Raheem Sterling managed to score goals in their last three games. In Chelsea’s last three games, they have managed to score three goals courtesy of Sterling while they have conceded six cheap goals.
Chelsea’s biggest defeat so far this season came from lowly rated Leeds United (3-0) on August 21, and they recorded their only clean sheet so far this season against struggling Everton (1-0) on August 6.
After their 2-1 away loss to Southampton on Tuesday night, coach Thomas Tuchel admitted that Chelsea are being punished due to soft defending and sloppy performance. He blamed the team’s poor run on the players’ mentality.
The German tactician who admitted that it was mere luck that Southampton didn’t score more goals against them concluded that Chelsea are not tough enough.
“We are not tough enough to win these matches away”, coach Thomas Tuchel affirmed. “It was the same story in Leeds, there we thought the problem was we didn’t score in the first 25 minutes and then they pushed us off-balance in two minutes with two goals and we could not find any answers.
“Today, we scored so everything was okay but one set piece again, one sloppy defending again, we were off-balance and we did not react to it. We were lucky not to concede a third goal at the beginning of the second half. We were not tough enough as a team to react or push it over the line for us.
“Soft defending. What stops that is a pure mentality, stop it with defending mentality. There is no superiority for the opponent, there is no need to give shots away, just toughen up as a team and show a different mentality
“I don’t like to talk about it normally because you cannot prove it with data or tactical position but it is like this. Both goals are cheap, soft goals and should not happen if you expect to win a match in the evening at an away stadium.”
🗣️ “We are not tough enough.”— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) August 30, 2022
Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel reacts to their 2-1 defeat against Southampton tonight 💬 pic.twitter.com/Jpug25gM17
What next for coach Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea?
If Chelsea’s performances in their last four games are anything to go by, the club is bound to struggle this season despite the heavy amount the club has spent on acquiring new players this summer.
Note that Chelsea have signed five players already this season which cost them a total of over €187 million but they are not playing as well as they did in the 2020-2021 season in which they won the UEFA Champions League title.
With the amount the club’s new co-owner Todd Boehly has released for transfer business this summer, the fans and the club’s management are expecting Thomas Tuchel to push for the Premier League title instead of being anywhere close to the mid-table at this point.
Hence, the pressure is building on Thomas Tuchel and his boys to improve as soon as possible before the club’s management loses confidence in the German tactician and his coaching crew.
Tuchel has to start showing that he has worked on his team’s mentality from this coming weekend as the team is scheduled to face West Ham United at Stamford Bridge at 15:00 on Saturday, September 3, 2022. Anything less than a victory for Chelsea this weekend would turn more fans and some members of the club’s board against Thomas Tuchel and his coaching crew.