Chelsea FC were stunned away from home by supposed group whipping boys Dinamo Zagreb in their first group game of the 2022/23 UEFA Champions League with a 1-nil loss.
The Blues’ boss Thomas Tuchel has come out to criticize the players for the huge underperformance they put up, noting that they lacked hunger and intensity throughout the game.
The only goal in the game was scored by Mislav Orsic at the Maksimir Stadium after a solo run to slot past new big-money signing Wesly Fofana, to slot past Kepa Arrizabalaga in goal for the Premier League outfit.
Tuchel bemoaned his side’s performance and admitted that he did not see it coming as they fell to a third consecutive loss away from home.
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The Blues have now conceded at least once in their last six games in all competitions, and this is the club’s longest run without a clean sheet since the German gaffer took over at the helm in January 2021.
“I’m angry on myself,” he said. “I’m angry on our performance. It’s not aggressive enough on the ball, it’s not enough individually or enough as a team.
“Not a lot [of players are playing at the top of their game]. It’s obvious that we’re underperforming. It’s a lack of determination. A lack of hunger and intensity. You cannot expect to win games. We are clearly nowhere near where we want to be.
“I just know that I need time to digest it and find solutions. It’s a story of the last games – we start okay. But then we lack precision. We lack the smell of blood.
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“It’s clearly my job to analyse it. Clearly we need to be much better. We are not happy with our results. We are not happy with our performances. I’m a bit surprised by this performance today.
“I didn’t see it coming. Obviously I was in the wrong movie. I thought that the last game helped us, we showed a reaction against West Ham. Had good training sessions. I thought the team were prepared.
“I didn’t see it coming that’s why I know I’m angry on myself. There is no day off in the next days, don’t worry. There cannot be a day off at the moment.”
With these performances, it remains to be how long Tuchel will be in the job despite the big money transfers that were made under the new ownership of the club.