Lille-Chelsea: How Chelsea manages daily life after the sanctions against Roman Abramovich

Football, there was little question this Tuesday during the traditional pre-match press conference. If Thomas Tuchel made every effort to warn against a vengeful Lille team after the first leg result (2-0 victory for the Blues), all the questions asked of the German coach and Kai Havertz revolved around only one subject: what will become of Chelsea? To this question, the German’s answer remained the same as last weekend: he doesn’t know.

There is no update, we have been in the same situation for a few days“, explained the German entry, propelled spokesperson against his will of a club which advances in the unknown.I think anyone who gives you assurances should not be believed because nobody knows, in my opinion, what will happen“, he had advanced on Sunday before being comforted by a serious-looking Petr Cech. “We must admit that we are moving forward day by day because all of this is not in our handsexplained the technical director of the Blues to Sky Sports. Discussions are continuing so that we can operate in a way that allows us to finish the season“.

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Hotel, plane: you have to manage everything on your own

Its end of the season, precisely, Chelsea will continue to draw it in this already pivotal week. In Lille, the European champion will come in the shoes of a quiet favorite but not insensitive to the context. It’s simple: now, the Blues can only spend 24,000 euros for their trip. To arrive in the North of France, the Blues were able to count on plane tickets and a hotel reservation purchased before the appearance of sanctions against Roman Abramovich, freezing the club’s assets.

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A real luxury to listen to Thomas Tuchel who does not really know how his Blues will prepare for the other meeting of the week, against Middlesbrough on Saturday in the quarter-finals of the Cup. “You have to deal with the restrictionshe explained before listing these. There are changes to be made on the number of staff members who can travel, on the number of rooms we have at the hotel, you have to know how you get to the matches. From what I understand, everything is in place so that we can arrive in professional conditions.“.

In this strange daily life, where the logistics take up more space than the athlete, Thomas Tuchel took on hats that we did not know about him and that he certainly did not imagine. He, the FIFA coach of the year 2021, has thus become steward, accountant, spokesperson and ambassador on his own. He had even offered, ironically, to become a bus driver if his team needed it.

Thomas Tuchel

Credit: Getty Images

Esprit in the locker room

I didn’t have the choice to also take this role I would have done well without ithe however admitted on Tuesday. It’s like that in England, there are only a few people who are allowed to speak in a club. […] It’s more or less me speaking outside for the club. It hasn’t always been comfortable, but I try to be honest and give you an overview of our daily life and information, but always from a sporting point of view and speaking with my heart as a coach. . But I’ll be more than happy when it all calms down and we talk more about football“.

For Kai Havertz too, the atmosphere is heavy. “We are professionalsexplained the German when defining the state of mind of the troops. We all know it’s a weird situation for the club but we are players first and foremost, we have to stay focused on football and matches“Listening to him, the whole dressing room is lined up.”If necessary, I would be ready to pay for our trips, without worryhe said when asked about this possibility. It’s not a big problem for us. There are more important things in the world right now than whether we’re going to fly or bus to our away games“.

So, as often at Chelsea, it’s the fighting-spirit that reigns when it comes to resourcefulness. While waiting to know the identity of a possible buyer after the announcement of the sale of the club on March 2, it is a troop on a mission that will seek to stay alive until a form of normality is regained, like the promised Tuchel: “As long as we have jerseys, as long as we are alive, as long as we are a team, we will be competitive and we will fight to win because we owe it to the people who support us. It’s our responsibility“.

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