Richie McCormack
Richie McCormack

15.25 14 May 2021


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Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel says the midweek Premier League defeat to Arsenal has left him angry ahead of Saturday's FA Cup final. 

The Blues go to Wembley on Saturday to face Leicester, with the German hoping to secure his first trophy as manager.

However, their final tune-up saw Tuchel suffer just a second league defeat since his appointment in January.

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Arsenal came away from Stamford Bridge with a 1-0 win, which the former Paris Saint-Germain head coach says served as a wake-up call.

"Yes, it clearly did. It is good for the preparation," Tuchel said, "We all feel that anger at the missed opportunity and the performance that night against Arsenal.

"We have the challenge to focus on only this match, on us, play on the edge and we will try to do this.

"In terms of quality, we will have to be at our best. Leicester is a strong side that deserves to be in the final and two days later we compete with them for top four.

"This is the highest level and we need a top performance."

N'Golo Kanté missed Wednesday's game, with Tuchel confirming the French midfielder was left out as a precaution.

"We took the decision together, me and N’Golo and the medical to leave him out and give him the Arsenal match to rest and have a treatment to the right Achilles," said the Chelsea boss.

"It was pain management, it is not a huge injury. It is nothing you need to be afraid of it getting big. It was just there and a bit annoying.

"Pain management and pain treatment. He did all the training sessions yesterday, today no complaints. He will start tomorrow and very likely finish the game for us."

Mateo Kovacic could also return to the Chelsea side, having missed their last nine games in all competitions with a muscle injury.

Tuchel says the combined talents of the Croatian and Kanté could be the difference-maker against Leicester at Wembley.

"It's huge because Mateo has everything we need in the midfield: experience, power, acceleration, deceleration, can beat players, has the physical ability, and has played big games.

"When we missed N'Golo and Mateo in the same match, we lacked a lot of quality, energy, and experience.

"Billy [Gilmour] did a huge job in both games but it's not fair to compare him to these players because they have more experience and they are a step ahead in their development. It's what we need in the key moments of the season.

"It's big news for us that Kova is back because he has a big impact on the dressing room around big matches. He's a very positive guy so it's good news."

Having played every minute of their FA Cup run to date, Tuchel confirmed that goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga will start against Leicester.

Klopp |’Five million times respect & one time not, what’s more important?’


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