Tuchel explains why he had to give the players a day off

Photo: Mike Hewitt/AP

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Chelsea’s performance against Brighton was lethargic, as the Blues managed to hold on to a goalless draw against the Seagulls at Stamford Bridge.

As the second half progressed, Brighton looked the more likely to score, and Chelsea managed to get a point out of the game.

Speaking at the end of the match, Chelsea boss admitted fatigue had played a part in the team’s performance, and that the players weren’t well rested.

Tuchel observed, as he gave his port-match analysis: “We seemed a bit tired mentally and physically, we could not find the rhythm that we normally play and it was also credit for Brighton for a very strong defensive performance. At the end we had two or three big mistakes in the build-up and could even lose the game, so we have to accept it and keep on going.”

He also said: “I was a bit concerned about the physical impact of travelling after Porto and of Man City, but we decided to let the team play with not so many changes between Porto and Man City. Today we had enough changes [five to the starting line-up] I thought to be a bit more fresh but maybe we lacked one day.

“It is a big difference if you have two days between matches and three. Maybe we lacked one day to be a bit more relaxed, to be a bit more fresh, but we have to admit also that it was a huge distraction since two days, it was not the full focus on our game which maybe also plays a role in all this, so maybe given all the circumstances, we are clearly not happy but I have to accept that we did not deserve more today, which is maybe for the first time.”

Chelsea play West Ham in a very important London derby on Saturday, and Tuchel admitted that the day off after the Brighton game came in handy indeed.

“Tomorrow is a well-deserved day off and then we will prepare the West Ham game,” said Tuchel.

“After we have a couple nights to sleep we will see that we are in fourth place and it is in our hands, and it is a tight race. We missed now two opportunities in home matches, this worries me a little bit. but we have to keep on going.”

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