2. Thomas Tuchel’s perfect start to life at Chelsea Football Club
The past few weeks must have been a strange one for Thomas Tuchel. Rarely, if ever, has a manager posted a record that looks something like this: Played 10, won seven, drawn three, lost zero and had his successes attributed to every other factor in the world apart from the good work that has clearly been done on and off the training pitches since his appointment on the 26th of January. In this respect, Thursday night’s comprehensive victory over Liverpool could finally be the result that sees Tuchel get the respect he deserves for the job he has done thus far.
While there is certainly a case to be made as to whether Chelsea’s results are merely part of a morale boost that often accompanies a new managerial appointment or simply down to the quality of opposition faced, what is undeniable is Chelsea’s improvements in defense since the appointment of Tuchel. In his 10 games in charge thus far, Takashi Minamino of Southampton remains the only opposition player to have found a way past Chelsea’s new look backline, with the Blues keeping eight clean sheets in the process.
Under Tuchel, Chelsea’s defense has not just gotten better. It is unquestionably, from a statistical point of view at least, the best defense in the Premier League by quite the distance. This is despite the team having suffered the loss of Thiago Silva early on in this run of games following an injury sustained against Tottenham in the earlier part of February. This is not something that happens because of a “new managerial bounce”. This is something that happens because of the tactical work done behind the scenes and it is about time that fans and pundits alike begin respecting the work that has to be done to come away with victories away to Spurs, Atletico Madrid and now Liverpool.
It is still early days, however, and in the words of Thomas Tuchel himself, it is important not to get carried away with the results thus far. However, 10 games into his tenure as Chelsea boss and Tuchel is showing all the signs of the potential that can be harvested from this team with him at the helm. It remains to be seen if he is indeed given the time and resources needed to fulfil his promises made to the Chelsea board.