Tuchel in race against time to join up with Chelsea for Club World Cup

But the German – who is self-isolating back in England after testing positive for Covid – has made himself available around the clock to hold team talks and plan training sessions.

That means early morning calls due to the four-hour time difference – and Tuchel has even had to overcome his aversion to mobile phones to stay in constant contact with his coaches as they prepare for their Club World Cup semi-final against Al Hilal.

The earliest the Chelsea manager is likely to be able to fly out is Friday – providing he posts two consecutive negative lateral flow tests.

In his absence, assistant Arno Michels and first-team coach Zsolt Low have taken charge on the ground, alongside technical director Petr Cech.

But Tuchel has overseen all preparations via video calls, with the club even trying to hook a suitable link to allow him to take the pre-match team talk from inside the dressing room at the Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium on Wednesday.

Conference calls are easier to organise at the club’s base at the Ritz Carlton – but the possibility having to set a feed over a laptop computer at the stadium may prove too fiddly to make it worthwhile.

Tuchel is desperate to make it out to Abu Dhabi in time for Saturday’s final if Chelsea progress, where their opponents are expected to be Brazilian giants Palmeiras.

But even if he must watch from afar, he has ensured he can be as big an influence as possible as he bids to win a third trophy since taking over the club in January last year.

It has meant the manager – who admits he is terrible at responding to messages on his phone – has had to keep all lines of communication open.

Chelsea training in Abu Dhabi ahead of their Club World Cup semi-final

/ Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Source link

Back to top button