Football

Tuchel not ‘convinced’ by Dean admission after Cucurella incident; Kante suffers ‘quite serious’ injury


Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is unimpressed after Mike Dean admitted that he made a mistake on Cristian Romero’s hair pull on Marc Cucurella last weekend.

Earlier this week, VAR official Dean admitted that he had messed up and should have ordered a review of Romero’s clash with Cucurella at Stamford Bridge in the 2-2 draw.

Cucurella was brought down in the penalty area minutes before Harry Kane’s last-minute equaliser for Tottenham.


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Tuchel and Antonio Conte were both sent off at full-time in the fall-out, with the Blues boss immediately lamenting Kane’s goal standing.

Both managers expect to receive FA sanctions after being charged for their dugout clashes, but the two coaches also hope to avoid touchline bans.

Dean admitted he should have asked referee Anthony Taylor to review the Romero-Cucurella incident on the pitchside monitors, which might have allowed Chelsea to play out a 2-1 victory.

Tuchel admitted he could not take much solace in Dean admitting a mistake over an incident he considered so clear and obvious at the time.

“Well hopefully I’m not too honest, but if the mistake is that big and that obvious what’s the point of not admitting it if the whole world sees it?” said Tuchel.

“I struggle to be fully impressed by the statement. It’s so clear and obvious I cannot understand how a referee cannot make the right decision.”

Tuchel and Conte clashed several times on the touchline in Sunday’s high-octane 2-2 London derby draw.

The pair’s niggly handshake at full-time that led to the red cards was immediately turned into a string of social media memes.

And Tuchel revealed he was quickly laughing about the clash, with no bad blood at all between him and Conte.

“Of course we laugh, it’s very important to laugh and laugh at ourselves,” said Tuchel.

“I was laughing in the dressing room; it was the heat of the match, it was for me not that bad.

“The handshake was maybe too long and too heavy I admit that but no harm was done at least from my side. And we didn’t insult each other.

“I think the thing would have ended if there were not 20 people around us that make the thing look much worse than it actually was.

“But you’re right, if you have reaction like this you need to live to the reaction towards it. And of course I laughed about myself.

“It was passion between two men who fought for their team and I hope they don’t make more of it.

“It’s not that big a deal for me, it was about passion and nothing more. He was fighting for his team, I was fighting for my team.

“As you hopefully felt before we played Tottenham last season with Conte and now, I have nothing but the biggest respect for him. And this will not change because of that incident.”

Chelsea will travel to Leeds on Sunday but must do so without N’Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic and Armando Broja.

Tuchel confirmed Kante will miss a number of weeks with hamstring trouble, with Kovacic still out with a knee problem.

Broja will miss the Leeds clash with a knock, while Christian Pulisic is a doubt with an Achilles injury.

“For N’Golo it’s quite serious, we’re talking about weeks, which is not good news,” said Tuchel.

“And we are disappointed and sad, because N’Golo was super important and super fit.

“Armando Broja will be out for some days but will not come with us to Leeds.

“Mateo Kovacic as well still out with knee problems.

“Christian Pulisic has Achilles problems, but trained today and let’s see.”

 





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