Thomas Tuchel reveals 2 Chelsea players face late fitness tests ahead of Tottenham clash
New Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel has said Kurt Zouma and Kai Havertz will undergo late fitness tests ahead of the Blues’ trip through the capital to face Tottenham on Thursday night.
The duo have taken the blows in training and are now facing a race against time to get in shape for the London Derby.
Speaking ahead of his first meeting with José Mourinho in the dugout, Tuchel said the center-back and attacking midfielder’s problems were “small” but would require analysis. Otherwise, Chelsea will be at full power at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
“We have two small problems today on the training ground,” Tuchel said, quoted by the BBC.
“Kurt Zouma and Kai Havertz walked off the pitch with no problem but they’re taking pictures now.
“Everyone is available.”
Zouma has not yet played under Tuchel, having lost his place in the starting lineup in the last days of Frank Lampard’s tenure, with Antonio Rüdiger back in the squad to bring Thiago Silva into the heart of the Blues’ defense.
Havertz started his compatriot in charge’s first game against Wolves and looked sharp, although he only played ten minutes last time against Burnley, which suggests he had a role to play on Thursday evening.
Alongside Havertz, Timo Werner is another player Tuchel hopes he can play in one form or another, with the head coach saying Chelsea will look to build on his strengths.
“It’s our responsibility to create times when he can do his best, which means attacking the space behind to use his speed,” he said.
“We create situations with the whole team to use their strengths. You can talk in practice but nothing matters if they don’t score in the game. He has fond memories of the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. He scored for Chelsea and RB Leipzig there. and he’s not looking for excuses. He works hard with a smile. “
Speaking of facing a Mourinho side, Tuchel added: “He has now built a Spurs squad with Moussa Sissoko and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg who are super competitive. They have exceptional quality and speed with Son Heung-min and Gareth Bale.
“I have the greatest respect for him because he trains teams at the highest level to compete game after game.
“We do it in our style and there are many ways to be successful. He’s a world-class coach, but we’re here to beat him and we’re very excited to have matches like this. ”
Meanwhile, Tottenham will be without the talismanic striker Harry Kane, as well as midfielders Dele Alli and Giovani Lo Celso and left-back Sergio Reguilón.