Having seen his Chelsea side all but secure their place in the top three of the Premier League with a win over Leeds, Thomas Tuchel’s attention will now turn to Saturday’s FA Cup final. And as he prepares for that clash with Liverpool, the German will find he has four players who starred at Elland Road who are now undroppable.
Goals from Mason Mount, Christian Pulisic and Romelu Lukaku ensured the Blues claimed all three points on Wednesday. The trip to Jesse Marsch’s side was the last chance to impress before the showpiece event at Wembley this weekend.
One man who is certainly assured of his place in the side is Mount, who ran the show against Leeds. He opened the scoring after just four minutes with a beautifully clipped shot, before providing the assist for Pulisic’s goal.
It means the Englishman has now reached double figures for both goals and assists this term. Mount was a livewire all night, causing Leeds plenty of problems, something Tuchel will hope he can replicate against Liverpool.
Fellow academy graduate Reece James also appears nailed on to start at Wembley as he continues to show why Chelsea missed him so badly during his period out with injury. The 22-year-old provided the assist for Mount’s goal and had an astonishing pass success rate of 95 per cent, as he also successfully completed five of his six attempted dribbles.
James was also solid defensively, winning 100 per cent of his tackles, 71 per cent of his defensive duels and making six recoveries. Chelsea can ill-afford to see him start the Liverpool game on the bench, as he did for February’s Carabao Cup final.
Another who didn’t start that game was Romelu Lukaku, who has not seen eye to eye with Tuchel for most of the season. His strike against Leeds was his third in two games, while he also has three in his five FA Cup games this term, form that Tuchel cannot overlook as he prepares to face Liverpool.
At the other end of the pitch, Trevoh Chalobah has also struggled for game-time in recent weeks, but he put in a standout performance at Elland Road. The 22-year-old had more touches than any of his team-mates, made eight recoveries, won 100 per cent of his tackles and six of his nine defensive duels to stake a major claim to be included at Wembley.
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