Chelsea have replaced Frank Lampard with Thomas Tuchel, who achieved Paris Saint-Germain’s best Champions League finish last season.
Thomas Tuchel was formally announced as Frank Lampard’s successor at Chelsea on Tuesday. The German has already overseen his first training session as the side’s coach and a 0-0 draw versus Wolverhampton Wanderers. A lot has been made about his years at Borussia Dortmund and Paris Saint-Germain, but what can the Blues expect from their newest manager in the longer run?
PSG achieved their best ever European finish last season, as runners-up. One of the vital cogs of this side was the tactician who got the best out of his attackers, while being tactically flexible to outdo different clubs. On their way to the final, the French side scalped the likes of Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig right from the group stage.
Chelsea can expect a similar system, where the traditional 4-3-3 will be the primary formation. Depending on how opponents set up, there will be wholesale changes and the prospect of a four-man attack should not be ruled out either. Defensively, Thiago Silva’s experience will be very crucial as the Blues will press high up the pitch. The full-backs, Ben Chilwell and Reece James, will be afforded more freedom going forward.
In possession, the side will look to build up very fast and not look to have too much time on the ball. The pace of players like Christian Pulisic, Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner will be very crucial in the attacking transitions. The wingers in this system also tend to play more centrally and thus, Pulisic and Ziyech may score goals more often than before.
Tuchel prefers to opt with a gegenpressing system in which players press hard once the ball is lost. This is similar to Liverpool’s tactic, but Chelsea arguably have better players to execute it. Mateo Kovacic and N’Golo Kante have great work-rates and thus, can lead the press from the midfield. Pulisic and Ziyech, who will be very important players for Tuchel also defend well. The full-backs will be tested to the limit as well.
While the new Chelsea boss remains a great tactician, it would not come as a surprise if he were prematurely dismissed from his duties. In the past, he fell out with both hierarchies, Dortmund’s and PSG’s, and although results were satisfactory, sour relations between the board and manager led to his dismissal. Chelsea rarely give managers enough time anyway.
What are your expectations out of Thomas Tuchel?