Last night’s friendly at Bournemouth gave Thomas Tuchel the opportunity to see a number of his Chelsea players in match action for the first time, and it was an experience he enjoyed as the Blues showed resilience to come from behind and triumph on the South Coast.
Emiliano Marcondes had headed the Cherries in front midway through the second half, but substitute strikers Armando Broja and Ike Ugbo netted in quick succession to complete a rapid turnaround, securing a victory in our opening pre-season fixture.
‘I’m always happy when we win, because we play to win,’ assessed Tuchel after the game.
‘It was a tough test. Bournemouth started very bravely, and very direct and very aggressive. We needed some time to adapt to feel a bit more comfortable. Then we controlled the first half and had some big chances.
‘The second half we did a lot of changes, interrupted our own rhythm, had some crucial ball losses to give away two big chances, but in the end it’s nice because we came back and showed a good mentality.’
Tuchel stuck with five at the back throughout but switched to two up front in the second half with a more narrow midfield three.
‘It suits Armando and Ike better as double strikers,’ noted the boss.
‘They had the two chances and they took them. This is what they do and now they have to continue.
‘It was good, and necessary to turn the game around. It’s a much better feeling to win games and to continue from there, than to lose and worry or be sad and angry.’
Twenty-one different players featured for Chelsea at the Vitality Stadium over the course of an entertaining 90 minutes. Two-thirds of them had never played under Tuchel.
‘We need these games to analyse and to judge our players, and to make decisions about the best next steps for them,’ he said.
‘There is now a training group of 28 or 29 which is a huge group, and players are coming back in the near future, so we have to make some decisions.
‘It’s good to learn during matches because we need to judge them on a fair basis and on some impressions from games because it’s better than training.’