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tuchel trouble Thomas Tuchel makes startling title claim as Chelsea draw against Brighton

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Mason Mount of Chelsea reacts as Danny Welbeck of Brighton & Hove Albion (not pictured) scores his side's equaliser. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Mason Mount of Chelsea reacts as Danny Welbeck of Brighton & Hove Albion (not pictured) scores his side's equaliser. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Mason Mount of Chelsea reacts as Danny Welbeck of Brighton & Hove Albion (not pictured) scores his side's equaliser. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Thomas Tuchel admits his side are facing a mounting crisis after they dropped more Premier League points in a 1-1 draw against Brighton at Stamford Bridge, as he admitted their title hopes are in tatters.

Danny Welbeck's injury-time header stunned the embattled Blues to steal Brighton a deserved point, after Romelu Lukaku's early has put Chelsea into the lead.

Yet a hamstring injury for Reece James and a back problem for Andreas Christensen added to Chelsea's woes, as Tuchel admitted it was not realistic for his team to be considered as title contenders as their problems on and off the field mount.

Asked if the Blues can still compete for the title, Tuchel replied: "How should we be in it? We have seven Covid cases. We have five or six players out for six or more weeks. How should we compete in a title race?

"Everyone else who has a full squad, everybody in training has the full power to come through this league.

"We would be stupid to think we can do it out of Covid and injuries and just play, and everybody would be stupid to do it without 23 fit players.

"This is the reality, this is where we are and we have to adapt to the demands of the situation which you are in.

"I competed very hard for the win at Brighton at home. I don’t know what I can expect from my players in terms of physicality, intensity or minutes. Nobody knows any more because we have never done something like this. We play trial and error and see what we can do.

"I will protect my team. We can play better but we need the full squad over weeks and weeks. It’s a hamstring injury for Reece James which is a huge blow, and a back injury for Andreas Christensen.”

Chelsea have now slipped to four draws in their last five home league matches, to drop eight points behind leaders Manchester City, but Tuchel insisted suggestions that Brighton were worthy of a point at Stamford Bridge were misplaced.

"A draw about right? Absolutely not. We had the better chances and a clear penalty. Very disappointing," he added.

"We are struggling but we have again two injured players. If the ref does not want to give a penalty when it is a clear 100% penalty. Circumstances are against us. 100 % penalty, you ask the ref not me. Our players are Injured. I told you what would happen weeks ago. Same thoughts, I told you.

"Sure we are tired, if you had been in bed for 10 days and played Premier League after that you would be tired."

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