LONDON, Jan 18 — Thomas Tuchel said on Monday it would be wrong to change Chelsea’s approach just to suit misfiring striker Romelu Lukaku, insisting the club are doing “everything to help him”.
The Chelsea boss voiced his frustration at the Belgium forward and his other attacking players after the west London side’s costly 1-0 defeat by Premier League leaders Manchester City on Saturday.
Tuchel, whose outfit travel to Brighton on Tuesday, was asked at his pre-match press conference on Monday whether he should change Chelsea’s style of play to suit their 28-year-old club-record signing, who re-joined the Blues from Inter Milan in August.
But the German said he could not focus just on his under-performing star attacker, who has only scored two Premier League goals since September.
“I think we do everything to help him,” said Tuchel.
“This is what we do constantly for any player. This is a team sport so it’s not about 10 players serving one player. This is not Chelsea and this is not football.
“Every player is serving the team. This is the highest principle and it will never change,” he added.
Tuchel repeated he had expected more from his attacking players against leaders City, who are now 13 points clear of his third-placed side.
“He (Lukaku) is included in our offensive performance,” said Tuchel.
“He’s a key player so there will always be pressure.
“There will not be more pressure than he puts on himself and we need to find a mix between all the expectation, all the pressure and still to be relaxed enough to play your best game.”
The Chelsea manager also called for greater clarity on the decision-making process around postponing Premier League matches.
Sunday’s scheduled north London derby between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal was called off, with the Gunners short of players due to coronavirus, injuries and Africa Cup of Nations commitments.
Chelsea asked for their game against Wolves on December 19 to be postponed after seven Covid-19 cases in their camp but that request fell on deaf ears.
“I feel strongly that we need clarity and consistency in the decision-making and maybe we lack this a little bit,” said Tuchel.
“I believe in the rules still because if I start doubting or not believing, where does this end?” he asked.
“I get the information and then I accept it because what else is there? I don’t lose my energy with decisions that I have zero influence in.” — AFP