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Tuchel tells Lukaku that Chelsea won’t change for him as Belgian striker is sent ‘team sport’ warning

9:06 PM IST 17/01/22
20220115 Romelu Lukaku
The Blues are still trying to bring the best out of the £98 million signing, but they will not be tinkering with their tactical approach

Romelu Lukaku has been struggling to justify his £98 million ($134m) price tag at Chelsea, with questions being asked of how he fits into the Blues’ system, but Thomas Tuchel says he will not be changing his ways for anyone.

The German admitted on the back of a 1-0 defeat to Premier League leaders Manchester City last time out that his No.9 needs to start offering more to the collective cause.

It has been suggested that the man in charge at Stamford Bridge could aid those efforts by tinkering with his tactical approach, but Lukaku has been warned that nobody in west London will be catering to his demands.

What has been said?

Quizzed again ahead of a trip to Brighton on Tuesday as to whether change is required in order to get Lukaku firing, Tuchel told reporters: “No, I think we do everything to help him.

“I think it's the wrong question because it's focusing on one player. He is a key player and we want him to be a key player but for me, I think it is the wrong approach.

“This is what we do for any player. This is a team sport and it's not about 10 players serving one player. It is not Chelsea and it is not football.

“Every player is there to serve the team. This is the highest principle and won't change.”

Has Lukaku underperformed at Chelsea?

There was much excitement at Stamford Bridge when Lukaku returned to familiar surroundings in the summer of 2021.

Having helped to fire Inter to the Serie A title last season, while proving himself as one of the most fearsome frontmen in world football, the 28-year-old was expected to spearhead a challenge for Premier League glory in 2022.

He has, however, caused controversy with an interview in which he suggested that he never wanted to leave Italy and has registered only eight goals through 22 appearances.

Pressed on whether Chelsea were expecting more from a club-record signing, Tuchel said: “We expected more from all our offensive performance in the last match.

“I think we had enough offensive actions, transitions, to hurt Man City more than we did. If this answers your question, maybe not 100 per cent, but he is included in our offensive component.

“He's a key player, so there will always be pressure but not more pressure than he puts on himself. And we need to find a mix between all the expectations, the pressure and to be relaxed enough to play your best game, because it's not only about pushing, about demands, it's also about feeling peace and being relaxed on the pitch.”

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