'Would’ve preferred': Tuchel says he didn't want to bring on Chelsea player against Tottenham yesterday
Chelsea coach Thomas Tuchel confessed that the plan was not to use Thiago Silva as a substitute against Tottenham Hotspur last night.
Speaking to Sky Sports after his side’s 1-0 Carabao Cup semi-final victory, Tuchel admitted that Brazilian was not supposed to play a part at all yesterday evening.
Story of Silva’s day out
Silva returned to the squad on Wednesday for the first time since testing positive for covid at the beginning of the month.
He only came back to training a few days before the London derby, along with N’Golo Kante, who had also been isolating.
Both players travelled across the capital but began the game on the bench.
After Chelsea took the lead through Antonio Rudiger, Tottenham understandably pushed harder for an equaliser, forcing Tuchel’s team to retreat slightly.
Spurs had a goal and a penalty decision overturned by VAR in the second half, showing signs they were coming close to a leveller.
Silva should’ve stayed put
In response to this sudden surge from the hosts, the Blues boss brought on his two recovering stars as an insurance policy.
Silva replaced Andreas Christensen just after the hour mark, whilst N’Golo Kante took Mateo Kovacic’s place 13 minutes from time.
However, the German coach revealed this tactical change was not in his original thinking.
“In general, important (that they got minutes) but I would have preferred that Thiago can maybe stay out, but we thought when we lost control and Andreas Christensen needed to go out, that we should finish in our usual shape of a back five,” said Tuchel.
“That is why we brought on Thiago. But that was like more or less in-game management.
“I would’ve preferred that he can have another training session and rest a little bit more.”
Getting ready for City
Understandably, Tuchel wanted to keep Silva fresh for the upcoming Premier League encounter at the Etihad with Manchester City.
Despite his incredible fitness, asking the 37-year-old to play twice in just under 72 hours is a big ask.
On the plus side, the centre-half should be back up to some kind of match speed ahead of the City clash.
He and Kante are more than likely to play a prominent role on Saturday, so getting the legs loose again can only be seen as a positive.