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Chelsea Boss Thomas Tuchel Makes Decision On Droping Edouard Mendy After Mistakes

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Thomas Tuchel, the head coach of Chelsea, has backed under-fire goalkeeper Edouard Mendy after another unimpressive performance in goal and argued that his number one goalie lacks “a little bit of luck.”

The German was questioned once more about Mendy’s play after Chelsea’s 2-1 win over West Ham on Saturday.

The 29-year-old was probably at fault for the goal that gave the visitors the lead, as he failed to punch clear a looping header from a set-piece, allowing Michail Antonio to score 61 minutes later.

The Senegalese was then involved in a contentious altercation with Jarrod Bowen, in which the West Ham attacker was ruled to have fouled Mendy after the two collided inside the penalty area.

Maxwel Cornet scored in the 89th minute, but referee Andrew Madley disallowed the goal following VAR review.

Mendy writhed on the ground in apparent agony as Cornet scored, but Madley disallowed the goal after VAR intervention.

Mendy, who could have handled the back-pass from Reece James better when coming off his line, was given a tremendous break.

As a result, there are issues as to whether the 2021 FIFA Best Goalkeeper of the Year should be removed from the Chelsea goal after a string of subpar performances.

However, Tuchel, in a curious reference to the historical French leader Napoleon, stated that Mendy is only a victim of bad luck and insisted that the situation surrounding his recent decline in performance is “calm.”

“It’s a very sensitive position in football in general. And it’s not everything that’s just pure quality and about decision-making,” Tuchel told reporters. “It’s about the feeling…that you feel the confidence and sometimes, also, it’s having a bit of the luck.

“Somebody sent me an interesting quote about Napoleon. He asked his generals that they should not only be the best quality but also a bit lucky. And this is what you need also for leaders and for goalkeepers.

“They can have the kind of momentum that, if they make a little mistake, it’s not punished… as it is at the moment. He gets punished for not a lot of what he does wrong. In my mind, the situation is calm, we have two fantastic goalkeepers, two fantastic guys.”

Kepa Arrizabalaga, whose summer loan transfer to Napoli fell through, has been suggested as a replacement for Mendy in Tuesday’s Champions League match against Dinamo Zagreb in Croatia.

Mendy’s recent decline in performance has prompted this idea.

And the Chelsea manager refused to rule out giving the Spaniard an opportunity to push his cause for greater playing time, revealing how he convinced the £71 million goalkeeper to remain at Stamford Bridge after weighing his options.

“Yes, he tried, he tried [find a new club]. He checked his options, which we were aware of. They were not satisfying for him nor for us. So he stayed,” Tuchel added. “I’m very happy about that. I was always very clear with him, directly to him, that I want him to stay.

“And, in my point of view, he is absolutely ready to play. It’s on us if we give him the chance or not, but he is ready, in how he behaves, how he trains.”

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Confirmed Chelsea line up vs Newcastle: Lesley Ugochukwu replaces Moises Caicedo as Palmer start with Gallagher in Midfield #NEWCHE

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Mauricio Pochettino makes two changes to his Chelsea team for today’s game at Newcastle.

Benoit Badiashile comes in for his compatriot Axel Disasi in the heart of defence, while Lesley Ugochukwu replaces Moises Caicedo.

Otherwise, it is the same starting XI that began the 4-4 draw against Manchester City prior to the international break

That means Reece James, Thiago Silva and Marc Cucurella join Badiashile at the back, ahead of Robert Sanchez. Enzo Fernandezand Conor Gallagher continue in midfield, with Raheem Sterling and Cole Palmer supplying the width in attack, either side of Nicolas Jackson.

WhatsApp Image 2023 11 25 at 13 53 04

Caicedo and Levi Colwill, who was injured during the recent break, are among those named on the bench.

Alexander Isak returns for Newcastle after injury, but there is no Sean Longstaff.

Chelsea: Sanchez; James (c), Thiago Silva, Badiashile, Cucurella, Enzo, Ugochukwu, Gallagher, Palmer, Jackson, Sterling

Subs: Petrovic, Colwill, Disasi, Maatsen, Caicedo, Matos, Madueke, Mudryk, Broja

Newcastle: Pope, Livramento, Lascelles (c), Schar, Trippier, Guimaraes, Miley, Almiron, Joelinton, Isak, Gordon

Subs: Dubravka, Gillespie, Karius, Dummett, Ritchie, Diallo, Murphy, Ndiweni, Parkinson

Referee Simon Hooper

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How Palmer and Reece James Have Complemented Each Other in Chelsea’s Lineup This Season

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Reece James just returned to action for Chelsea this season after recovering from an injury that kept him on the sidelines for weeks but the synergy between the Chelsea Skipper and Cole Palmer has emerged as a pivotal factor in Chelsea’s recent impressive performance.

Their relationship on the pitch showcases a dynamic partnership that has been significantly impacting the team’s overall performance.

One key element of this collaboration is the strategic placement of Cole Palmer in the middle, operating behind the striker.

This positioning capitalizes on Palmer’s unique skill set, acknowledging that he may not possess the blistering pace or sheer physicality to excel in isolated one-on-one situations with defenders.

Instead, Palmer’s strength lies in his ability to receive the ball on the half-turn, exhibiting clever passes that ignite the team’s attacking prowess.

Palmer’s fluid style, characterized by his adept use of pockets and floating movements, creates a symbiotic relationship with Reece James.

James, a versatile right-back, benefits from Palmer’s strategic play by having the freedom to occupy the wing.

This tactical understanding not only maximizes Palmer’s strengths but also amplifies James’s impact on the game.

What becomes evident in this partnership is Palmer essentially playing as a number 10, operating in a role that aligns with his capabilities and enhances the team’s attacking dynamics.

By strategically placing Palmer in a central position, Chelsea leverages his playmaking abilities, allowing him to orchestrate the flow of the game and provide crucial link-up play between the midfield and the strikers.

The tactical harmony between Palmer and James is not just about individual brilliance but also about how their styles complement each other seamlessly.

Palmer’s intelligent movements and distribution empower James to venture forward with confidence, creating a fluid and dynamic attacking unit for Chelsea

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Chelsea eye double £156m transfer swoop as Todd Boehly faces Saudi Arabia questioning

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Catch all the biggest Chelsea headlines, including updates on Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, Todd Boehly’s questionable transfers and Benoit Badiashile

Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia
Chelsea are interested in Napoli duo Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia

Here is your morning Chelsea digest on Friday, November 24.

Kvaratskhelia interest
Chelsea have reportedly joined the race to sign Napoli superstar Khvicha Kvaratskhelia amid ongoing uncertainty over his long-term future with the Italian champions.

According to ESPN, Chelsea have joined the likes of Manchester City, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Newcastle United in holding an interest in Kvaratskhelia. Sources have told the outlet that Napoli value their star player in excess of €100million (£87million) and are hoping to fend off interest with a new and improved contract.

However, as the November international break has proven, Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations aren’t to be messed with and the Blues must get their finances in order to avoid any additional punishment. Todd Boehly has spent over £1billion on new signings since completing his takeover in 2022 and currently has a net spend of over £692million.

Kvaratskhelia isn’t the only Napoli player on Chelsea’s radar, with Victor Osimhen also on Pochettino’s list. However, the pair are worth a combined €180m (£156m) by CIES Football Observatory.

Saudi Arabia transfers questioned
Former Premier League defender Gary Neville has questioned Chelsea’s transfer dealings with Saudi Arabian clubs last summer amid the ongoing threat of Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations.

Ahead of the 2023/24 season, three players left Stamford Bridge to join the Saudi Pro League. N’Golo Kante’s seven-year stay in west London came to an end with a move to Al-Ittihad while Kalidou Koulibaly and Edouard Mendy joined Al-Hilal and Al-Ahli respectively.

Speaking on the Stick to Football podcast, brought to you by Sky Bet, he said: “I have no problem with Saudi Arabia setting up their league and spending as much money as they wish, but I did call for some sort of investigation into the deals Chelsea were doing when they were dumping players onto Saudi Arabian teams at the start of the season.

“It felt as though, to me, it needed a little bit of a look at – you can smell that something is not right.”

Badiashile going nowhere
Chelsea supporters have nothing to worry about in regards to Benoit Badiashile amid reported interest from AC Milan and AS Roma, football.london understands.

According to Calciomercato, the two Italian clubs are keen on signing the central defender ahead of the January transfer window. Milan are without Pierre Kalulu and Marco Pellegrino due to injuries and are doing their best to replace them in the winter.

The report says that the Italian duo want to sign Badiashile on loan, but the defender will be staying at Stamford Bridge for the foreseeable future, football.london understands. Badiashile’s focus is on Chelsea and getting back into the first-team and he has no intention to move elsewhere at this moment in time.

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