‘Was not 100%’: Thomas Tuchel admits he played 25-year-old against Everton who wasn't fully ready to start

Thomas Tuchel has admitted to the Evening Standard that Ben Chilwell wasn’t ready to start against Everton last weekend.

The Blues started their season with a narrow 1-0 win at Goodison Park, with thanks to a Jorginho penalty on the stroke of half-time.

The winning of the spot kick was a rare moment of the club getting on the ball inside the Toffees’ penalty area, with it being Chilwell who found himself in space in the area before being fouled.

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The England international lasted just over an hour on his return from injury, with him enduring a long spell on the sidelines following his season-ending injury back in November.

Despite his start, Tuchel has claimed he didn’t believe the 25-year-old was ready to start, however the situation regarding the left-back role left him no other alternative.

Chilwell wasn’t fit to start

He said: “We played with Ben Chilwell who was not, for me, 100% ready to start but the situation with Marcos Alonso and the late signing of Marc Cucurella made it necessary that we took the risk.”

Cucurella did make his Chelsea debut with 15 minutes to go, impressing in his intelligence as left-wing-back despite likely being set to feature as part of a back three for large portions of this season.

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Tuchel will now use this week to judge whether the Englishman is ready to face Tottenham next weekend, in the league’s first contest between two of the top six this season.

It may be a safer option to use the week in training to fully ingrain Cucurella into the starting line-up due to the fixtures importance to supporters not being lost on the squad.

Despite it being only one week in, the game will be a great measuring stick as to where the Blues are at in their push for top four, with Spurs impressing greatly in their 4-1 win over Soutampton.

Jack is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has freelanced for The Athletic and The Sun. Jack has reported live from Premier League and Championship grounds, whilst also being published in the Non League Paper.