Thomas Tuchel of Chelsea recounts how he raced to Abu Dhabi on the eve of the FIFA Club World Cup without seeing his final Covid-19 test result

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The manager of Chelsea, Thomas Tuchel has revealed that he had to leave his isolation center in London for Abu Dhabi on the eve of the FIFA Club World Cup final without seeing his final covid-19 test result.

Recall that the German tactician tested positive for the virus after he led Chelsea to beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 on January 23, 2022.

Since then, Thomas Tuchel has been coaching the club remotely. He had to make his input in Chelsea’s 2-1 victory over Plymouth on February 5 from his office. Also, he was not on the touchline when Chelsea defeated A-Hilal 0-1 on February 9.

Tuchel’s last covid-19 test result was delayed so much that he had to leave where he was self-isolating to the team’s camp on Friday evening. Hence, he could not participate physically in the club’s last training session before he arrived at the camp.

Thomas Tuchel of Chelsea recounts how he raced to Abu Dhabi on the eve of the FIFA Club World Cup without seeing his final Covid-19 test result
Coach Thomas Tuchel and Chelsea’s captain Cesar Azpilicueta after the FIFA Club World Cup victory.

The German tactician was only able to meet up with the team’s dinner on Friday night and chaired the club’s meeting on Saturday morning, February 12, 2022, before he took charge of the FIFA Club World Cup final match against Brazilian side Palmeiras later that evening.

During the game at Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium, Palmeiras gave Chelsea a run for their money but coach Tuchel’s input was able to get the better of the South American champions.

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At the end of the game, Romelu Lukaku’s 54th-minute goal and Kai Havertz’s extra-time penalty helped the Premier League side to win their first FIFA Club World Cup title.

After the 2-1 win over Palmeiras, coach Thomas Tuchel said: “We were running out of lights, with the time difference we knew the deadline was coming.

“So it was the second-to-last chance to make it, the last one would have been to arrive today in the morning. So I’m happy that we made it.

“I was several times on my way to the airport and several times on my way back while I was driving called back because my test was not negative.

“And finally we made it, I arrived yesterday for dinner, at 8.15 in the evening. I arrived on time for the team, with no chance to be part of the last training, so I took the meetings today.

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“It was not nice to watch the semi-final on the office at the screen, but as a coach, you want to be on the sideline. I’m happy now that all the effort went very well, everyone was so supportive. The effort was excellent and totally worth it.

“I had a tactical signal to see the whole pitch and the TV signal on the other big screen to watch the matches remotely. And I was in contact at half-time with my assistant in the tribune.

“We did the same with the cup game, but it’s not like I’m constantly talking to them, it’s more or less every 10 or 15 minutes.

“It’s very strange. Coaching is also about feeling, on the touchline, so I also needed the input from the guys on the sideline. It’s not possible to coach only from the office.”

Thomas Tuchel gives an update on Mason Mount’s injury

Thomas Tuchel gives an update on Mason Mount's injury
Mason Mount having a taste of the FIFA Club World Cup.

In the 31st minute of the FIFA Club World Cup final, coach Thomas Tuchel had to substitute Mason Mount for Christian Pulisic due to an injury.

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After the game, the German coach revealed that Mason Mount sustained an ankle ligament that could sideline him for a couple of games.

At the time of publishing this report, Chelsea was yet to confirm the extent of the injury.

“Mason was injured, in one of the very first scenes where he made a run to the far post with (Cesar) Azpilicueta, they both fell and his opponent fell on his ankle,” the coach said. “And he hurt his ligaments badly, so we have to see.

“He came straight to me and said he does not feel good, it felt painful and he did not know if he could continue. So we had to make the decision.”

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