Thomas Tuchel has reflected on what he went through when Manchester United defeated Paris Saint Germain in the UEFA Champions League during his time as the manager of the French club.
On February 12, 2019, Thomas Tuchel led PSG to Old Trafford and stunned Manchester United with a 2-0 defeat. Three weeks later, Tuchel hosted Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Parc des Princes and United stunned their host with a 3-1 defeat. The defeat crashed PSG out of the competition based on the away goals rule.
Thomas Tuchel says the defeat kept him in the dark for two days and he couldn’t talk to anyone due to the shock of the defeat. The German tactician who was sacked in December 2020 by PSG, says the defeat was an experience he has never encountered in his managerial career.
Tuchel said: “I can be very honest, after that match I was two days in a very dark place and I can tell you I was not able to speak to anybody and to think about anything else than this defeat.
“That maybe was the worst defeat that I experienced because it came from nowhere. It was, in a way, in the circumstances that it arrived. I was for two days in a dark place for a coach to be at… I didn’t experience anything like this ever again or before.
“It was in the circumstances, this game, how we arrived there, the pressure around the club concerning the round of 16, the history before and the result of the first match and the way the second match went with the VAR decision in the last minute.
“It was like it came from absolutely nowhere and that’s why this hit was hard to take. But, as I said, I was two days in a dark place but then we gave the players two days off and I think that was the best for everybody.
“After that, it’s like this in sports, it can teach you that you have to stand up and accept that a defeat is sometimes necessary to grow and develop and to ask yourself decisive questions.
“That can hurt and the reward was one year later, it was almost the perfect reward when we arrived in the final and we came a long way for that. It was through adversity and it’s often said that it makes you stronger.”
Thomas Tuchel will meet with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer once again. But this time around, Tuchel will be on the sidelines for Chelsea in the Premier League. The German tactician joined Chelsea in January a few weeks after he was sacked at PSG. Since he arrived at the club, he has been able to turn things around for the London club.
Tuchel took over from coach Frank Lampard when Chelsea were sitting on the 9th spot on the league table. But with the input of the German tactician, Chelsea are now sitting on the 5th spot on the league table with 43 points in 25 games.
Chelsea will face an in-form Manchester United that are currently sitting on the second spot on the league table with 49 points in 25 games, 10 points away from first-placed Manchester City.
A win in the game which is scheduled to take place on Monday, at 17:30, could return Chelsea to the 4th spot pending the outcome of the match involving the 4th placed West Ham United and first-placed Manchester City. While a defeat in the game could drop Manchester United to the third spot pending the outcome of Leicester City’s game against Arsenal on Monday.