Mark Irwin: Tuchel’s made NO attempt to hide his anger at Chelsea and relationship with Blues could soon end in divorce
WHEN Thomas Tuchel was pictured on the front page of The Sun on Thursday, it was the happiest he’s looked in months.
The Chelsea boss didn’t appear to have a care in the world as he relaxed in Sardinia with his new girlfriend.
Which was in stark contrast to his recent mood at Stamford Bridge as he struggles to come to terms with the change of ownership.
And the way things have been going lately, you have to wonder if his relationship with the club could soon be heading for the divorce courts.
The German perfectionist was at the end of his tether after Saturday’s 4-0 hammering by Arsenal in the final match of Chelsea’s pre-season tour of the USA.
He made no attempt to hide his anger as he questioned the physical and mental commitment of his players.
Now he fears that months of playing catch-up leaves Chelsea in danger of falling behind their Premier League title rivals.
For Tuchel has been working with one hand tied behind his back ever since Roman Abramovich was forced to sell the club after being sanctioned by the UK Government for his links to Vladimir Putin.
All that uncertainty meant that new contracts with key players could not be negotiated and potential transfer deals could not be teed up.
So while Manchester City, Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal were all making significant signings, Chelsea were still trying to sort out the mess left by the departure of Abramovich.
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Nor does it seem that things have got much better in the two months since the new American owners completed their £4.25billion takeover.
And having Todd Boehly in his ear on a daily basis certainly hasn’t helped to lift Tuchel’s spirits.
For his first 13 months at Chelsea, Tuchel was more than happy to have no contact with Abramovich and allow Marina Granovskaia and Petr Cech to take care of the day-to-day running of the club.
That left Tommy Tactics free to put all his focus on coaching the team.
But now he’s suddenly been told that he has to get involved in sorting out transfers and ruling on which players are coming and going.
To make matters worse, he’s fighting a constant battle to stop Boehly from signing Cristiano Ronaldo, 37, or some other ageing superstar who might raise Chelsea’s Instagram numbers.
They have already shelled out £35million for 31-year-old centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly after allowing Antonio Rudiger to join Real Madrid for nothing.
Raheem Sterling has also been signed to replace club-record mistake Romelu Lukaku.
But with the new season just one week away, Chelsea still look a long way short of where Tuchel would like them to be.
After finishing 19 points behind champions Manchester City and coming up just short in the cup competitions last season, the Blues are looking increasingly vulnerable.
They need to rekindle their romance with tetchy Thomas ASAP before he’s installing Tinder to seek a new managerial hook-up.
TOON NOT LIVIN IT UP
HAS the anticipated spending spree failed to materialise at Newcastle because the Saudi Public Investment Fund are ploughing their petrodollars into the LIV Golf?
I only ask because it seems the kind of money on offer to Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson, Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter could have bought Eddie Howe a title-challenging team.
It seems that no one who has ever worn a Pringle jumper is beyond LIV’s reach, with Henrik Stenson the latest to defect.
But in the first case of the rat returning to the sinking ship, Sergio Garcia has announced he is prepared to put his desertion on hold until he’s played in next year’s Ryder Cup.
They should tell him to stick his niblick where the sun don’t shine.
WITH Wembley booked for the Women’s Euros final, Leicester’s King Power Stadium was the biggest ground the FA could find to host Sunday’s Community Shield match.
With a capacity of just over 32,000, many Liverpool and Manchester City supporters have been left disappointed.
But at least they shouldn’t be affected by the planned rail strike.
Because there is no direct service between Leicester and the North West anyway.
BJORN TO RUN FURY
TYSON FURY has made more U-turns than a Tory leadership candidate since announcing his retirement from boxing in April.
Now the Gypsy King says he’s negotiating an exhibition bout with former world’s strongest man Hafthor Bjornsson.
The Icelandic musclebound Game of Thrones star is about as mobile as a Victorian wardrobe.
No one knows if he can take a punch but should he get the chance to chuck a 25-stone boulder, Fury had better watch out.
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