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Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Luka Modric confirms Thomas Tuchel has fulfilled huge Chelsea ambition despite Real Madrid loss

  It is difficult to think of success after a defeat, and nevertheless, it is what Chelsea must do to fire themselves back up for the res...

 

It is difficult to think of success after a defeat, and nevertheless, it is what Chelsea must do to fire themselves back up for the rest of the season.

 Blues supporters have overwhelmingly felt pride for their team's performance at the Bernabeu to leave another Champions League semi-final tantalisingly close before strikes from Rodrygo, and Karime Benzema took the dream away from other day Chelsea's stars.

Thomas Tuchel's men produced a display that was in stark contrast to the 90 minutes they played at Stamford Bridge one week ago, beaten by two moments of quality that Real Madrid more than proved they were capable of in the first leg .

 Nevertheless, from the first minute, Chelsea were intense and stifling both in and out of possession and, particularly in the opening 90 minutes, performed at one of their highest levels of the season.

While the comeback wasn't complete and the prospective of retaining their trophy is over, Chelsea proved the team they are and set the tone for the rest of the season. Quite frankly, it was the kind of performance Tuchel has aimed for since his first days in the hot seat.

"I don't think there are too many weaknesses. I want to focus on our strengths and focus on the amazing mix of the team from the experienced players to the big personalities and young and hungry talent," said Tuchel in his press conference following his first match in the Chelsea dugout against Wolves.

"I want to create a special energy and atmosphere that you need to achieve and have the possibility to win every three days in a league like this. I believe that we can do this daily.

"What I found yesterday was a very open staff, a very helpful staff that helped me prepare for this game and an open team. It was a totally unfair lineup today because I had no reason to leave anybody out, so from now on, it is the starting point, and we will absolutely focus on our strengths and the qualities that we absolutely have and build a team that nobody wants to play against."


The Chelsea on the pitch last night was certainly a team that nobody would want to play against. The squad Tuchel had available was a little different to the options he had on his first night in charge at Stamford Bridge.

Though without Olivier Giroud, Tammy Abraham and Emerson Palmieri, in addition to the injured Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ben Chilwell, perhaps he even had to be more focused. With Romelu Lukaku out with an Achilles injury, Saul Niguez and Marcus Bettinelli were the only new options for Tuchel to call upon.

Over the course of the last 12 months or so, the Blues have shown they have the ability to compete with anyone. They beat Manchester City in the Champions League final. They went toe to toe with Liverpool and dominated Real Madrid at the Bernabeu.

The special energy and atmosphere Tuchel spoke of already exists. The 3-1 defeat Chelsea suffered in the first leg did not show off these qualities.

 Tuchel even noted the Blues are not a team that can afford to drop their level and hope to earn results . Energy, commitment and investment are the tenets of the Blues style, and they were present in abundance on Tuesday evening.

Despite coming through the tie, Luka Modric could not help but acknowledge the challenge Chelsea presented. The veteran labelled Tuchel's team the most difficult to play against.

"We were dead until the goal we scored," he told BT Sport . "Chelsea scored three good goals. I cannot say we played a bad game, and they used their chances well.

"For me, Chelsea are the most difficult to play against, tough, physical and compact. But we showed great character and desire. It is a defeat that feels very sweet!"


Modric is a player who has won numerous Champions League, competed in a World Cup final and flourished at the elite level of football for more than a decade. His assessment of the Blues should not be taken likely. Tuchel and his squad know how to challenge any time, and they must show the consistency to do that.

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