Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel insists he is “satisfied” with topping the Premier League heading into a tough December period.
This is despite frustrating, consecutive home draws against Manchester United on Sunday and Burnley on November 6.
Both contests ended as galling 1-1 draws, but Blues boss Tuchel believes his side must be pleased with their season to date.
“How could you not be satisfied? I’m happy with the way we played, the courage and the intensity, the will and the ambition,” the German head coach said.
“It’s a hungry team and a team that plays with a lot of effort.
“This is what I like, it’s exciting to coach and exciting to watch.
“If maybe you don’t score from the set-piece against Juventus for the first goal, or if Thiago Silva does not save the Morata chance on the line, it’s always possible that what happened against Manchester United could happen against Juventus. This can always happen.
“But I’m very happy with where we are and how we are performing.”
Christian Pulisic appeared rusty in the 4-0 Champions League thumping of Juventus after a clutch of injury issues, while Timo Werner was similarly lacking sharpness against United.
Romelu Lukaku is still finding his fitness again after an ankle injury to boot and could only manage 10 minutes off the bench in Sunday’s draw.
With a hectic Christmas schedule hurtling into view, Tuchel insisted patience will be crucial when it comes to Chelsea’s forwards.
“I think that we still see that Timo hasn’t played for a long time so can we expect he’s on his peak? No,” said Tuchel.
“So what can you expect at the moment? He looked very sharp and scored a lot of goals in the last two training sessions, so I went with my gut in the thought he could hurt the two defenders.
“And he also had the goal against Juventus. It wasn’t easy for him against United, you can see that he lacks some games and from here we go.”
Despite Werner, Pulisic and Lukaku’s lack of fitness, former Blues assistant Jody Morris says he was surprised by Tuchel’s decision to delay his substitutions against United.
“From a fan’s perspective, I would definitely have liked a couple if not all three changes at the top end of the pitch a lot earlier,” Morris told Stadium Astro.
“The fact you have the level of bench that Chelsea had, there was no reason why at least two of them could have been brought on a lot earlier.”
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