‘Chance we had’: Tuchel gives his reasons for bringing on one Chelsea player in the second half against Everton

Thomas Tuchel said the motive behind using Trevoh Chalobah’s from the Chelsea bench against Everton was because of his threat from set-pieces.

Speaking after his side drew 1-1 with a tough Toffees team in the Premier League last night, Tuchel cleared up why Chalobah was brought on as a substitute.

Realistically, the manager had very few options besides the young defender to try and impact proceedings.

Blues looking battered

Due to a surge of positive covid cases in the Cobham camp before the game, Chelsea were forced to name a selection of subs that did not exactly strike fear into the opposition.

Two goalkeepers, three centre-backs, Ross Barkley, Saul Niguez and a half-fit N’Golo Kante.

RONALDO NEEDS TO STOP WHINING.

Photo by Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images

Not exactly a collection of game-winners.

At the point in the evening when the Blues had the lead, following Mason Mount’s fourth consecutive league goal, Tuchel decided to deploy his players in reserve.

Saul strangely went into the number nine position, pushing Christian Pulisic out to wing-back.

Barkley then replaced Ruben Loftus-Cheek in a more traditional central midfield role.

These changes were clearly intended to throw some new life into the attack and grab that precious second.

Tuchel’s sub troubles

As it transpired, the two introductions – Saul especially – disrupted the flow and made Chelsea more disjointed.

Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images

This allowed Everton to climb their way back into the fixture, having defended for virtually the entire evening.

They eventually punished their host’s lack of killer instinct by scoring from a free-kick with a quarter of an hour remaining.

Five minutes later, Tuchel threw Chalobah into the mix. Not to sure up the point, but to help find a goal from somewhere.

“We played with Saul as a number nine and with Trevoh, because maybe we get a goal from a set-piece because he is very, very strong at set-pieces,” said the German coach.

“That was chance we had. We are making the decisions and trying to make the best out of the situation.”

Unsurprisingly, Chalobah failed to sway the result in Chelsea’s favour and the points were shared.

Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images

This feels more like a loss for the Blues, as Manchester City and Liverpool both overcame their respective tests mid-week.

Is the blip turning into a crisis? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves…  

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.