It was an early press conference from Thomas Tuchel on Friday morning ahead of an early kick-off at Leeds United on Saturday, and it began with the squad news which included an update on Thiago Silva.
The experienced Brazilian was an unused sub on Monday against Everton, the first time he has been on the bench since suffering a muscle injury during the match at Tottenham at the start of February. Unfortunately it was not good news from Tuchel today.
‘Thiago had a little setback in training at the end of the training session the day before yesterday. He felt at the very end something around the same area where he was injured so we had to take him off, so he is back into a transition phase but not back into team training.
‘Tammy Abraham has still the ankle pain from the tackle against Burnley,’ the head coach continued.
‘Yesterday he came off [in training], the day before he was fine, so these two are out for tomorrow and everybody else is available.’
Tuchel admitted he is a little concerned about the Abraham ankle problem which stems from a game six weeks ago.
‘It is still the pain from a tackle a long time ago now. He does not feel really 100 per cent free and comfortable and I can see it in training, even if he finishes training I see it is not 100 per cent that he has trust in it.
‘I have 100 per-cent trust in our medical department, they are fantastic and they take care of it now. First of all it is most important he feels safe and free and feels zero pain, and then we can think about his comeback.’
The boss went on to discuss one of players who is available for the Leeds match but has so far been mostly used as a substitute under his management at Chelsea – Christian Pulisic. The American is very much part of his plans and could feature from the start soon.
‘When you sign and play for Chelsea, it is part of the job description to be patient and impatient at the same time,’ Tuchel explained.
‘Impatient because all of my players are competitors, all of them want to play every single minute. This is what they show every day, the hunger and desire, and this is what Christian shows.
‘At the same time, when you are not selected by the coach you have to also be patient and not lose confidence and keep on going to be ready any time, because it can happen any time. In the beginning Christian was a bit unlucky because we knew how much of an impact he can have when he comes from the bench, and we used this power and strength from him.
‘When it was possible for him to start around the Sheffield United and Barnsley games, he was one game unavailable and the cup game it was a bit too soon, it was a difficult game for him.
‘It was not too easy for him but in the end it is the quality from the players that shines on the pitch and it is also the duty of the players to show up and really earn that they play. This is what Christian does, so it can happen at any minute, any game.’