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Chelsea lose confidence at worst time with season in risk of freefall

T

homas Tuchel’s priority is to stop this season from going into freefall.

Back-to-back defeats have now cost Chelsea the FA Cup and placed their Premier League top four hopes into serious jeopardy. 

With just three games left of this exhausting season, Tuchel needs to ensure the rot is not allowed to set in with so much still at stake. 

But the looks on the faces of Reece James, Mason Mount and co will have the German concerned. 

Confidence is a fragile beast. 

The wave of optimism that swept them to the finals of the FA Cup and Champions League – and up to third in the League – feels a long way off after defeats to Arsenal and now Leicester City. 

Youri Tielemans’ wonder goal saw that Chelsea were beaten finalists for the second season in succession – and Tuchel could have no great complaints after seeing a first trophy in English football slip through his grasp. 

Just as against Arsenal in midweek, his team did not do enough to deserve anything else. 

In back-to-back games they have lost by a single goal. 

Against Arsenal it was the result of an individual blunder from Jorginho – here it was an absolute bullet. 

The FA via Getty Images

It does not matter how they come, if you cannot score at the other end, it will only ever take one goal to beat you. 

That is the pressure Chelsea’s misfiring forwards are placing on their defence. 

Once again their lack of cutting edge cost them. 

Timo Werner was at his most frustrating – running into legs, firing anywhere but on target and repeatedly taking the wrong decision. 

Tuchel’s own fury with the German was evident in the second half as he remonstrated with him for telegraphing yet another run. 

Getty Images

Hakim Ziyech – the hero of the semi-final – could not find a decisive final ball at several times of asking. And it was not until late in the game that substitute Ben Chilwell and then Mason Mount forced Kasper Schmeichel into meaningful saves. 


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