Chelsea manager, Thomas Tuchel, has dominated his pre match brief with the repeated words of ‘win and winning.'
The Blues host the mighty Real Madrid in London this evening after a superb 1-1 result in the first leg away in Spain last week.
So, with a UEFA Champions League final just 90 minutes, what are Tuchel’s feelings, thoughts and expectations?
- On the good 1-1 position
“The challenge is to forget the first result and start at 0-0.
“We will clearly prepare to win the match, nothing else. We have no other way to prepare matches. I only know to encourage my team to go out and try and win it.
“If we are at our best, it’s a no-brainer we go for a win. We want to win games. This club is about winning, this game is about winning, this competition is about winning.
“So forget the first result, it’s not as important as people out there think. There is zero importance for preparation for the next match. It changes nothing how we start the match tomorrow, what we do in training, and zero influence in the talk we give to our players.
- On his team selection decisions
“We will encourage them, we will demand from them, and we will be strong tomorrow at 8 o’clock as a group, as one club, with one big goal. This will only happen if we bring our best level to the pitch, and our best level is when we fight to win.
“I will make my decisions very late like I usually do.
“I have my ideas in my mind, but I’m too long in the business that I also know anything can happen in the last training session, or a situation can even change my mind.
“We need to wait. I need another sleep, and tomorrow I will decide on the line-up. I will give it to my team first, but what is sure is we played a good match with the line-up we had in the first game. It was a strong performance, and from that view there is no reason to do too many changes.
- On rest and yesterday’s training
“In this moment we had a feeling afternoon training was good because it’s a late match tomorrow, and then let the players sleep at home and not go to the hotel.
“In a season of almost 60 matches, and sleeping so much away from home and being so much in hotels, we try to reduce the time in hotels.
“Anything can have an influence though. Now we had three days in between games, so we had a lot of time to do recovery and take our time at Cobham to use the physios and masseurs.
“If you only have two days in between games we prefer sometimes to go to a hotel so players can take their time in the evening to get massages and treatment.
“When there are evening games, I had the feeling it will only increase the tension if we go to the hotel today. So let them go home, be a bit distracted, and we meet tomorrow for a walk, lunch and a meeting, and we will still have seven hours to prepare.
- On Chelsea women qualifying for the UWCL final
“We followed it on TV and it’s a big achievement.
“We are very happy because in the end it’s one club and it’s a big thing to arrive in the final, for the first time for Chelsea Women. Hopefully they can finish the job. Big, big congratulations from us.
“We will meet for lunch tomorrow. That gives us another seven-and-a-half hours together in the hotel. This gives me enough time for me to do meetings, and to have several hours of rest again, say if somebody had a bad night’s sleep.