Thomas Tuchel has been at Chelsea for nigh on two months now, and we can start to make some judgments about the team he’s building.
Some have complained about a lack of attacking intent, and it’s true that there has been a slide towards the defensive. But for former Blue Alan Hudson, who spoke exclusively to CaughtOffside, it’s also indicative of a trend in the league:
“For me, it seemed that Chelsea, who had United where they wanted them, had enough ideas of how to break them down,” Hudson said.
“I might be being a little critical here but this is happening in the modern game; it used to be fear of relegation from the teams at the bottom, but it has spread throughout the League… If I were playing today the lads would get together and have a private meeting – something we did in our day,” he went on.
“I am starting to believe we have gone back to the years when 0-0 will do… it seems the “freedom” to simply go and play is gone.”
Well, it’s a lot to take in.
In Chelsea’s case, it seems that Tuchel has dedicated himself to getting a really solid defence going, focused on beating the weaker sides with the odd goal and a penalty here or there. It’s not pretty, but it’s grinding us up the table.
Then, against the big teams as we saw on Sunday, a draw will do.
We’re happy to excuse this season, but fans won’t be happy if our games look like this come August.
As for the trend in the league overall, there probably is a feeling that there’s more to lose than to gain in most games for a lot of teams. Half the sides in the table are looking back at relegation, and the rest are distracted by European competition or attempts to win a cup.
In a season as packed as this one, it’s not going to lead to much dynamic football.