Thomas Tuchel insists his Chelsea players must forget the praise and positive feedback they’ve received after reaching the Champions League final as none of it will help against Manchester City tomorrow.
The Blues booked their spot in Istanbul later this month with a dominant display against Real Madrid at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. Chelsea won 2-0 on the night and 3-1 on aggregate to progress to the final, where they will take on Pep Guardiola’s City side.
Tomorrow’s Premier League clash at the Etihad is something of a dress rehearsal for the game in Turkey, although it has plenty riding on it as a stand-alone fixture. City have the chance to warp up the Premier League title with three games to spare. Chelsea, meanwhile, need a victory to remain in charge of the race to finish in the top four.
Given what is at stake for both sides, it’s little surprise Tuchel was keen to play down the impact tomorrow’s game could have on the Champions League final. That he says is an experience that can’t be replicated.
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“I think the final in Istanbul will be pretty unique no matter the score tomorrow, no matter if we win, they win, or if we draw,” Tuchel told reporters at his pre-match press conference. “Both teams will reflect that this one game in football and that this special game in Istanbul can turn the outcome of tomorrow’s game around.
“So I try to prepare it in a normal way, the challenge right now is to get the tiredness out of our legs and brains and to refocus.”
Tuchel added: “The big challenge is to now forget Wednesday as it won’t help us on the pitch. We need to think about our performance and what we put into this game. Forget the praise, the positive feedback, the result [from Wednesday]. We start again.”
Since taking charge of Chelsea at the end of January, Tuchel has guided his side to victories over several of European…