Thomas Tuchel admits he was WRONG to bring Romelu Lukaku on during Chelsea’s defeat at West Ham because the £97.5m striker is not ‘physically ready’ to play 45 minutes of football
- Chelsea were beaten 3-2 by West Ham at the London Stadium on Saturday
- Tuchel says he was wrong to bring Lukaku on during their clash with Hammers
- Lukaku started the game on the bench but was introduced in the second half
- He was just three appearances into his return from a serious ankle injury
- Tuchel says Lukaku was not ‘physically’ ready to play 45 minutes of football
Thomas Tuchel has admitted he was wrong to bring Romelu Lukaku on during Chelsea’s 3-2 defeat to West Ham on Saturday afternoon.
Tuchel started Lukaku on the bench but introduced the £97.5million striker into the game during the second half after Kai Havertz was forced off injured.
Lukaku was just three appearances into his return from the ankle injury he suffered in October and Tuchel said the striker was not ‘physically’ ready to play 45 minutes of football after the game.
Thomas Tuchel (right) said he was wrong to bring Romelu Lukaku (left) on against West Ham
Speaking to Chelsea’s official website, Tuchel said: ‘It’s my fault. I don’t think he is ready for 45 minutes physically but still we decided to bring him on for his height because we lost Kai.
‘Kai had a crucial role in defending set-pieces, which is a huge threat from West Ham, so this is on me. I took the decision so it’s my responsibility.’
Tuchel introduced Lukaku after Kai Havertz (above) was forced off injured at London Stadium
Lukaku was just three appearances into his return from the ankle injury he suffered in October
Tuchel also reflected on Chelsea’s performance as a whole, with their defeat against West Ham seeing them slip to third in the table behind Manchester City and Liverpool.
Despite having only won two of their past five Premier League outings, Tuchel insists there is ‘no need for major doubts’.
He said: ‘It’s details and you can always solve the details. There is no need to question the big picture and no need for major doubts.
Mason Mount reacts during Chelsea’s shock defeat against London rivals West Ham
‘In my opinion, it’s obvious why we did not have the result that we wanted against Man United and West Ham so it’s about details. That’s why I think we can sort it out straightaway.
‘Nobody wants to make mistakes but it won’t help if we just say ‘hey, don’t make mistakes anymore.’
‘We have to go through it and we need to be better in decision-making in crucial moments of matches to be able to have clean sheets or concede a maximum of one.’