Thomas Tuchel singled out Trevoh Chalobah for his terrific Carabao Cup final display for Chelsea against Liverpool yesterday.
Speaking to the club media in light of Sunday’s superb showdown, Tuchel metaphorically took his cap off to Chalobah after he returned to the side with a bang following his long injury layoff.
Great to see Trevoh in full flight
The Cobham academy graduate was thrust straight into the limelight under the Wembley arch, despite having not appeared for nearly a month.
Aside from the FA Cup victory over Plymouth, the centre-back’s only other outing since the turn of the year came against Jurgen Klopp’s men.
He must be well acquainted now with Liverpool’s luxurious front line, which welcomed a new addition recently in the form of Luis Diaz.
Diaz, Mohammed Salah and Sadio Mane all started the final, typically a nightmare scenario for any defender fresh from a period on the sidelines.
However, Chalobah seemed unphased by not only the occasion, but the rampaging Reds that kept attacking him all game.
“Huge performance again. We have here Trevoh who didn’t play for six or eight weeks and needs to play 120 minutes against Diaz, Mane and Salah. Brilliant,” said Tuchel glowingly post-match.
Chelsea also welcomed back another of their absentees, imbedding Reece James into the fray with 57 minutes on the clock.
“Reecey comes on after eight weeks of injury and plays almost an hour on this kind of level. I’m proud.”
Liverpool clinch the cup crown
Unfortunately, the sentiments for both recovering players meant very little considering the end result.
Having cancelled each other out for two hours, the Blues and the Reds needed a penalty shoot-out to decide the tie.
21 spot-kicks rippled the net before it was Kepa Arrizabalaga’s turn to step up.
Kepa replaced Edouard Mendy- who had performed heroically throughout the contest -just ahead of the drama from 12-yards.
The Spaniard’s expertise from the spot seemed to evade him, as Liverpool found a way past his gloves 11 times.
Deep into sudden death and with all the outfielders, plus the opposing goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher, having converted, all the pressure turned to him scoring one rather than saving.
Kepa’s shot might still be sailing into the London sky, such was the velocity and inaccuracy of the effort.
One man’s despair is another man’s joy, as Liverpool celebrated their first win in the competition for a decade.
Meanwhile, Chelsea and Kepa’s woes at Wembley continue. Let’s focus on the FA Cup instead!
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