Kovacic says Chelsea only lack 'one thing' compared to Liverpool and Manchester City
Mateo Kovacic believes Chelsea’s lack of consistency is the only thing separating them from challenging Liverpool and Manchester City for the Premier League title.
The Blues have all but secured the third-place spot in the league this season after the Leicester City draw.
The 19-point gap to league leaders Manchester City looks daunting, of course, especially since Chelsea were also behind by the same amount of points last season.
Does it mean Chelsea have not progressed in the last year? This is not necessarily the case.
Kovacic argued that Chelsea already proved that they can go toe to toe against top teams. It is just that they have not been able to do it twice a week, unlike the two leading teams.
“We can compete with the very best for sure, we have shown that against Liverpool this season,” the Croatia international told Chelsea’s 5th Stand.
“But what we are missing is consistency, doing it every three days.
“It’s even more difficult to compete with the consistency of Liverpool and City.
“They don’t drop too many points, and in the last three or four years, they have been on such a high level.
“So that’s the only thing we need to improve.
“It’s not easy, but with the manager we have and the players we have, we can do it.”
Chelsea suffer from injuries and the lack of reliable goalscorers
Key injury absences, including Kovacic’s, certainly played a big part in Chelsea’s inconsistent performance throughout the season.
The one key difference between Chelsea and the likes of Manchester City and Liverpool, however, is that Tuchel lacks consistent goalscorers who could bail the team out when things got difficult on the pitch.
To put it into perspective, Manchester City and Liverpool each have three players in their squad with more than 10 league goals this season.
At Chelsea, there is only Mason Mount.
It is unrealistic to expect any team to be at their best twice a week year-round, so you need players such as Kevin de Bruyne and Mohamed Salah who can help you at least turn draws to wins.
This is especially true for Tuchel’s Chelsea side who have only tasted six league defeats this season but already recorded 11 draws, the fifth-most in the league.