Tuchel Considers Dropping Lukaku Out Of Chelsea’s Squad For Liverpool Clash
The Blues striker could sit out the upcoming clash at home to Jurgen Klopp’s side after his controversial interview
GOAL has learned that Thomas Tuchel is considering dropping Romelu Lukaku from Chelsea’s squad against Liverpool after the striker conducted a controversial interview behind the club’s back that was published this past week.
Tuchel will reveal his squad to the team tomorrow and the Belgian may not even be on the bench even after he was judged to be criticising his manager’s tactics.
It has since emerged that neither the club nor the player’s representatives knew of the interview beforehand. It appears to have arranged directly with the Sky Sport journalist in London.
Why does Lukaku face discipline?
The 28-year-old will likely face some disciplinary action despite the magnitude of Chelsea’s upcoming clash with Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Sunday evening.
His comments became football’s biggest talking point on Thursday evening, outraging the west Londoner’s fan base.
“I’m not happy with the situation and that’s only natural,” he told Sky Sport Italia. “The head coach has decided to play a different system and I mustn’t let up, I need to keep working hard and be professional.
“I’m not happy with the situation but I’m a grafter and I mustn’t let up.”
The timing of the story was unfortunate as it was published three weeks after it was filmed, with it released amid a drastic downturn in form for the Blues.
Although the context may have changed, the content of the quotes have frustrated many people around Lukaku.
Tuchel’s was relaxed with the media’s persistent questioning on Friday morning. However, behind closed doors, several sources have said that the manager is angrier than it looked with his £97.5 million ($136m) striker from Inter.
Who could play instead?
Kai Havertz is well-placed to replace Lukaku despite a prolonged spell on the sidelines with Covid.
The Blues have also welcomed back Timo Werner, but he is still thought to be struggling to overcome his own bout with the virus.
There’s also an option to play Christian Pulisic through the middle, but he has struggled to perform in a central role in recent weeks.
It’s unfortunate timing for the Blues as Lukaku had been in good form, scoring two goals in two games after returning from Covid.