Chelsea face challenge to keep up with rivals this summer, says Thomas Tuchel

The Blues are unable to plan their summer business until the takeover is complete

Nick Purewal
Wednesday 18 May 2022 17:48
Comments
Thomas Tuchel, pictured, believes Chelsea face a summer of “rebuilding” rather than improving the Stamford Bridge squad (Martin Rickett/PA)
Thomas Tuchel, pictured, believes Chelsea face a summer of “rebuilding” rather than improving the Stamford Bridge squad (Martin Rickett/PA)

Thomas Tuchel believes Chelsea face a summer of “rebuilding” amid the impact of the Stamford Bridge club’s sale.

Chelsea will lose Antonio Rudiger to Real Madrid and Andreas Christensen to Barcelona on free transfers this summer.

The Blues are blocked from making new signings or securing existing players to new deals under the strict terms of the temporary UK government licence.

Owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned by the government on March 10, with Downing Street claiming to have proven his links to Russian president Vladimir Putin following the invasion of Ukraine.

Abramovich’s lawyers are understood to be hopeful of striking a legal resolution with the government that could now usher through Chelsea’s £4.25billion sale to Todd Boehly.

The government is yet to agree to any terms, it is understood, with the granting of a licence to complete the sale the final step of Boehly’s purchase process.

Chelsea’s hiatus in the transfer market has allowed rivals, both domestic and European, to steal a march on summer window targets.

Antonio Rudiger is set to leave Chelsea this summer (Martin Rickett/PA)

“You ask many times if we have a delay in approaching players and making plans; of course, a huge delay,” said Blues boss Tuchel.

“We are affected by it, players are going out. We are rebuilding, not improving the squad. This is always challenging but we are up for the challenge.

“I don’t know where we are from day one. What I can promise is that I will be here – if I can promise that. I will be here with full energy and positive energy no matter what.

“We will still work for Chelsea and I refuse to think of negative scenarios. We will be competitive, on which level we will see.

Chelsea could soon have new owners (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

“On how the delay and sanctions will affect us, there is a risk.

“It will be very challenging to make up for the disadvantage, given the situation of the other two teams, City and Liverpool, who are already improving the squad and set one benchmark after the other in all aspects of the game.”

Lawyers for Abramovich and the government are understood to remain in talks on how to handle the Stamford Bridge club’s £1.5billion debt to the Chelsea owner.

Abramovich has wanted to write off that debt, but the Government sanctions blocked that process amid frozen accounts.

Todd Boehly, right, with Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck, left (Adam Davy/PA)

The government is understood to have raised repeated concerns that Abramovich would renege on his pledge to waive those loans and seeks legally binding assurances that he will in no way benefit from the sale.

Abramovich’s lawyers are understood to be confident that their latest proposals will prove acceptable to Downing Street.

Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Boehly struck a purchase agreement to buy Chelsea in the early hours of May 7, having won the ultra-competitive and uniquely public race.

US magnate Boehly met Chelsea managers Tuchel and Emma Hayes last week and will now hope to complete the takeover with little further delay.

The Premier League must give the final sign-off on Boehly’s consortium through owners’ and directors’ tests, before the Government issues a new licence to allow the sale to complete.

Chelsea’s temporary Government licence expires on May 31, with the date acting as a hard deadline for the sale.

The expected resolution between Abramovich and the Government should mean that deadline remains on course to be met.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in