Thomas Tuchel: Mindset, weariness matter in Liverpool-Chelsea FA Cup final
- Chelsea and Liverpool play the FA Cup final on May 14
- Liverpool have an extra 24 hours to rest before the game
- Chelsea head to Leeds for a Premier League fixture before the cup final
Liverpool, who bested Aston Villa 2-1 on Tuesday, get an additional 24 hours to recuperate while Chelsea travels to Leeds for their Premier League fixture.
Both the sides have had gruelling seasons, with the Merseyside club playing all possible fixtures after cementing their place in the Champions League final in Paris, against Real Madrid. Chelsea, who crashed out of the CL in the quarter-finals, has also had successes in the UEFA Super Cup and Club World Cup. Both Tuchel and Liverpool counterpart, Jurgen Klopp have previously complained about closely-packed fixtures.
However, ahead of the FA Cup final, Tuchel refused to keep bringing up the same point, especially after making a big deal about it in a season disrupted by COVID, resulting in Chelsea getting a relentless series of fixtures from December through February.
The German said, "We're used to it. We'll not comment on it", adding, "Well, what is it, I'm always confused lately with the days. Tuesday to Saturday and Wednesday to Saturday, of course, we'd love to have one more day but it has to be enough for us."
Since the return from the international break, Chelsea's performance has been somewhat inconsistent, with some concerns about the club's ownership changing. The Stamford Bridge boys got a week's time to prepare before their clash with the Wolves but managed a 2-2 tie there as well.
Tuchel commented on this, saying "We look a bit drained, tired mentally. When we look at our games from the sideline, this is understandable given the circumstances around the club in which we play, it is draining, it is challenging. We had some knockout games to play after the international break, with huge emotional input, and huge emotions to deal with."
Meanwhile, there are few doubts about Liverpool's mentality, with former club legend and current Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard praising the Reds for the same. While Klopp's side doesn't retain much hope to win the PL title, they're focused on the FA Cup final, with the German having rested key players like Andy Robertson and Mohamed Salah in the Villa fixture.