Thomas Tuchel gave reasoning behind his decision to take off both Timo Werner and Kai Havertz during Chelsea’s 2-0 win over Porto, speaking in his post-match press conference.
Werner and Havertz started the Champions League victory in Sevilla yesterday, but were simultaneously removed just after the hour mark.
Although it was a strong performance overall, Chelsea’s German pairing struggled to stamp their mark on the game.
Tuchel recognised their toils and explained why he decided to substitute them in the second half.
He said: “I accept that it was a tough match for Timo and for Kai today.
“They did not have their best day and we did not deliver so good, so the connection between the deep seven players that we needed for the build-up and the front three, we lost a bit the connection to them, to have a bit more of an impact.
“The balls we delivered were not the best balls. I could feel our two German players up front, Kai and Timo, do not play on their highest level today so I wanted to have an impact from the bench.”
Porto’s stubborn defence made it difficult for Chelsea to create too many clear-cut chances for Havertz or Werner.
Mason Mount’s goal arrived thanks to a clever pass from Jorginho, whilst Ben Chilwell latched onto a lose piece of play from the Portuguese side.
Between the two former Bundesliga stars, they failed to have a single shot on target all evening.
Werner’s barren goal spell with club and country stretches to 12 games. Havertz hasn’t scored for Chelsea since January 10th.
European occasions like last night were part of the reasoning behind forking out big money for the duo.
Unfortunately, they are yet to deliver, as frustrations continue to swirl about their contributions.