Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel was ‘not happy’ with Tottenham’s European exit - ‘I know what Antonio Conte can do’

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 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel says he “was not happy” when Tottenham were ruled out of the Europa Conference League because of the extra training time it afforded Antonio Conte.

Spurs were eliminated from the competition in December after UEFA confirmed their postponed fixture against Rennes would be deemed as a forfeit following a Covid-19 outbreak at the club.

While Conte’s side haven’t always been a symbol of consistency since, the former Chelsea boss does appear to have enjoyed the benefits of competing in only one competition of late, albeit Saturday’s loss at home to Brighton was disappointing.

Conte, of course, led Chelsea to the Premier League title during a season in which they were not playing European football after the collapse of Jose Mourinho’s second stint in charge at Stamford Bridge.

Tuchel, meanwhile, has had to balance a squad often ravaged by injury across a number of different fronts, winning the Club World Cup and reaching both domestic finals.

Speaking ahead of Chelsea’s meeting with Arsenal on Wednesday, he said: “I was not happy when Tottenham went out of the UEFA Conference League because I know what Antonio Conte can do with teams when they are focused and he can train them physically.

“I thought this would be a huge uplift for them in the domestic competition, and the same for Arsenal when they went out of the cup. I felt this would be a huge boost for them because they have a very young and talented team, so to train them and to be focused on one competition can be an advantage.”

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