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‘Ziyech is not just in the right place’ – Dutch legends Kuyt and Van Basten criticise Tuchel’s handling of Chelsea star

14:05 GMT+3 26/04/2021
Hakim Ziyech Chelsea Manchester City FA Cup 2020-21
The Morocco star is yet to cement a place in the Blues' starting XI despite his recent heroics in the FA Cup semi-final

Former Dutch stars Marco van Basten and Dirk Kuyt have slammed Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel for his handling of Hakim Ziyech.

A week after firing the Blues into the FA Cup final with his match-winning goal against Manchester City, Ziyech started on the bench as Tuchel’s men secured a 1-0 win at West Ham United on Saturday.

The Morocco international was later introduced for his 19th Premier League appearance as a 75th-minute substitute for Christian Pulisic.

Tuchel's decision to keep Ziyech out of his starting XI on Saturday did not go down well with Van Basten who suggested Chelsea’s new system does not fit the 28-year-old playmaker.

“Ziyech again on the couch. When he gets in, that's like a striker. He can do that too, because he is just a good player. I am sad to see rotation... He's just not in the right place,” Van Basten said on Ziggo Sport via Voetbalzone.

“That Werner plays really badly, but doesn't he come in much more often? The system this trainer plays is just not good for Ziyech. Then as Ziyech you have to say: 'You know what? I have to plead.

“It is now about Ziyech because I have nothing to do with that man. This is not getting along like that. I'm not saying it's bad for Ziyech or bad for that trainer, but it doesn't work like that.”

Meanwhile, former Liverpool star Dirk Kuyt questioned Timo Werner’s regular presence in the Chelsea starting XI after he ended his 17-game goal drought on Saturday.

“He scored in that FA Cup match against Manchester City. Then you think: well, he's through it,” Kuyt said.

“The next game: boom, on the bench. Then you look at Werner, who can do whatever he wants. He plays over and over. He scored against West Ham, but he could have made one more.”

Ziyech has scored more goals under Tuchel (three goals) compared to the two efforts he registered under former manager Frank Lampard.

Former Blues defender Khalid Boulahrouz thinks the Morocco star is not appreciated by the former PSG boss.

“It doesn't feel good: you don't play the football you want to play in a system that doesn't suit you,” Boulahrouz added.

“You don't feel the appreciation of the trainer, his status under Lampard was very different from now under Tuchel.”