Chelsea stars face ‘strange situation’, admits boss Thomas Tuchel

Chelsea cannot resolve the futures of contracted players until Todd Boehly’s takeover is complete.
Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel admits the club’s players face a ‘strange’ situation (Adam Davy/PA).

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel admits the club’s players face a ‘strange’ situation (Adam Davy/PA).

By Nick Purewal, PA

Thomas Tuchel has admitted the likes of Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso now face a “strange” limbo at Chelsea.

Blues boss Tuchel has already revealed the Stamford Bridge club are in talks with Azpilicueta about his future, despite the club captain having triggered an automatic one-year contract extension.

Barcelona continue to be keen on the right wing-back and the Catalan giants are understood to hold strong interest in Alonso too.

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Chelsea cannot resolve the futures of contracted players until Todd Boehly’s takeover is complete, leaving manager Tuchel conceding several players were facing an uncertain few days ahead.

“It’s a bit strange, you don’t really know what’s going to happen,” said Tuchel.

“If we are able to sell, do we want to sell, do we have a chance to get alternatives?

“So the situation is, not only for us, as those responsible for the rebuild and responsible for the transfers, but also for the players, a strange situation.

“And you could feel it. Over a long, long period of time we managed to keep the focus and put it aside, but, the longer it went after the international break, it had an impact on us, and still does.

“So let’s see, when, finally, we will have the chance to act and make up, because the disadvantage in terms of timing for the rebuild is big.”

Antonio Rudiger will leave Chelsea this summer (Adam Davy/PA)

Antonio Rudiger will leave Chelsea this summer (Adam Davy/PA)

Chelsea beat Watford 2-1 at Stamford Bridge on Sunday to cement their third-place Premier League finish, with a clutch of players completing the campaign without knowing their plans for next season.

Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen have certainly completed their time at Chelsea however.

Germany defender Rudiger will head to Real Madrid, while Christensen is poised to complete his Barcelona switch.

Chelsea will hope to be back to business as usual shortly, with US magnate Boehly’s takeover still on course to be complete before the May 31 deadline.

Roman Abramovich’s UK Government sanctions have left the Blues operating on a strict temporary licence and only new ownership will remove those restrictions.

Chelsea will hope to offset the losses of Rudiger and Christensen as soon as they are able to dip back into the transfer market.

Cesar Azpilicueta is one of the players facing uncertainty over his future (Adam Davy/PA)

Cesar Azpilicueta is one of the players facing uncertainty over his future (Adam Davy/PA)

A recalibrated squad could hand the Blues the chance to look to switch to a back-four set-up next term, but Tuchel downplayed any such ideas.

“I don’t know if it would be a chance of another shift,” said Tuchel.

“I don’t think it’s a problem of structure that we have, because we delivered in this structure at a very high level with our performances.

“But we are looking in every direction. I think the structure suits our players very well with the players you mentioned, but also with Thiago Silva, our midfielders, Reece James and Ben Chilwell because they have more freedom to attack on both sides.

“There were some reasons to play this structure in the way we played it and we were very successful and at a high level very stable.

“It’s not the plan to change it, but maybe we are forced to. It’s no problem to adapt and find solutions, but the problem is we are forced to be passive and it’s what we don’t like and we are not used to it. So I can answer the question more precisely when things move forward and we can start to act.”


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