Football: Chelsea have 'no time to breathe' amid hectic schedule, says Tuchel

Chelsea coach Thomas Tuchel (right) and players celebrate after a goal against Real Madrid on April 27, 2021. PHOTO: AFP

LONDON (REUTERS) - Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel said he is relishing the challenge of competing in three different competitions with games coming thick and fast as it keeps him on his toes.

With Chelsea still involved in the FA Cup and the Champions League, the London club played eight games in April after last month's international break, playing a midweek game every week.

"It's brutal. We played in France the same amount of games... but, of course, the challenge and intensity of this league is different," Tuchel, who previously managed Paris Saint-Germain, told reporters.

"It is another level, quite relentless. But it keeps you on your front foot and getting out of bed early. There is simply no time to breathe, to sit back and get too relaxed or comfortable. This is a good thing."

Chelsea, who are fourth in the Premier League, play a west London derby against Fulham on Saturday (May 1) with one eye on their Champions League semi-final, second leg against Real Madrid on Wednesday. They drew the first leg 1-1 in Madrid.

"Fulham is a good chance to keep our advantage in the league, nothing else," Tuchel said, with West Ham United three points behind.

"I know very well it is a match between two semi-finals, it is not a usual week but I'm happy. It is the moment to prove to ourselves that we can focus our energy into tomorrow's game."

Chelsea forward Timo Werner has scored only three goals since the turn of the year and Tuchel said the German who was signed for a reported €50 million (S$80 million) last year, should stay focused.

"Do we wish for more goals? Yes. Does he wish for more goals? Yes," Tuchel said.

"He should keep his head up because he can trust his instincts, focus on scoring, this is what he does. This is what he needs to do."

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