Thomas Tuchel has revealed the type of player who remains a target for the squad and has also discussed using a back-four and a three-man defence with wing-backs in the pre-season match against Arsenal.
Raheem Sterling has already been brought in to boost the forward options and Kalidou Koulibaly reinforces the squad in defence, but there is a particular characteristic for the rearguard that is being sought.
‘We are looking for guys who can play on the left side,’ Tuchel stated.
‘Toni [Rudiger] played on the left side and was not a left-footed guy, so maybe Kalidou can play there because he plays in a back-four on the left side, but let’s see what is possible. It is not only about bringing players in for numbers; we need numbers, we also need quality so we will make some decisions late, not only about players but also about systems. Ideally we would have a left-footer.’
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The Blues began with a four-man defence in Orlando on Saturday night, with Thiago Silva paired with Trevoh Chalobah. After two goals had been conceded against the Gunners by half-time, Cesar Azpilicueta and Malang Sarr were introduced as we switched to a back-three with wing-backs, with Koulibaly later taking over from Thiago Silva.
‘Given the fact that that Kalidou was ready for 25 minutes and who was available, we tried to play 4-4-2,’ Tuchel explained.
‘I think it was not a structural problem as we conceded also two goals [in the second half] with a back five and two no.6s which we are very used to playing. It was the behaviour that was much more important. It is more important how we play in a structure and not so important what we play.
‘We need to be more lively, we need to be more aggressive. The level of commitment and the level of physical input was simply not enough against Arsenal.
‘The adaption of position, the joy of helping each other, the joy of working hard together was what was absolutely missing.
‘But it’s not a moment to destroy my group, because my group of players is a very, very, very nice and very hard working group and that will not change. But this is the honest analysing of this game and it’s not worth talking around it.’