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Thomas Tuchel has urged the public not to start a witch hunt against unvaccinated Premier League players.
Chelsea’s squad still contains players yet to have Covid-19 vaccinations but the majority of the Blues are protected against the virus.
The European champions will head into Wednesday’s Carabao Cup quarter-final at Brentford without as many as eight top stars ruled out after positive Covid tests.
But manager Tuchel has revealed some of those who have tested positive are double-jabbed and still managed to contract Covid.
Tuchel has insisted all along that the decision to take up the vaccine must remain a personal choice, and now he has made an impassioned plea for a level-headed approach.
“Covid is obviously causing us an issue, but it’s not that we have all unvaccinated infected,” said Tuchel.
“We have vaccinated players who are positive.
“I don’t want to get involved in pointing fingers and starting the hunt for non-vaccinated people.
An update from the boss ahead of tomorrow night. ⤵️
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 21, 2021
“This is a choice to make. Leave it there.”
Chelsea will dip into their vast academy talent pool to plug the Covid gaps for the midweek Brentford trip.
Tuchel was left “a little bit angry” by the Premier League’s refusal to postpone Sunday’s goalless draw at Wolves, but the German coach insisted that matter is now closed.
Jorginho has provided a conclusive negative Covid test and is available again, though Trevoh Chalobah is a doubt with a knee problem and Andreas Christensen is carrying a knock.
Kai Havertz, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Romelu Lukaku, Timo Werner, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ben Chilwell will all be missing again however.
Lewis Baker would definitely have been among the academy talents on view in west London, only for the 26-year-old to return a positive Covid test.
“We cannot force people to get vaccinated and I will not change my opinion on that,” said Tuchel.
“You can have have an opinion, I can have an opinion but a player can also have an opinion.
“I am not the guy to comment on that, I am not the expert here. There are experts in this country, all over the rest of Europe. Ask them and ask me please about football.
“I am vaccinated, I took the decision for me and that’s it.”