Our next PL2 fixture is against Blackburn at Cobham a week on Sunday, although some of this group will be involved in the UEFA Youth League fixture away to Juventus on Tuesday.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Teddy Sharman-Lowe; Xavier Simons, Sam McClelland (c), Xavier Mbuyamba, Lewis Hall; George McEachran, Lewis Baker; Charly Musonda (Dion Rankine 61), Charlie Webster (Joe Haigh 60), George Nunn; Bryan Fiabema (Jayden Wareham 73)
Unused subs Lucas Bergstrom, Josh Brooking
Scorers Fiabema 41, Nunn 66, Haigh 74, Hall 90+5
Booked Nunn 20, Baker 79
Liverpool (4-3-3): Marcelo Pitaluga; Conor Bradley (Tony Gallagher 63), Tom Clayton (c), Billy Koumetio, Owen Beck; James Norris, Tyler Morton, James Balagizi (Elijah Dixon Bonner 77); Jack Bearne, Mateusz Musialowski (Dom Corness 85), Max Woltman
Unused subs Liam Hughes
Scorers Beck 6, Musialowski 52, 55
Hayes confirmed Lauren James will not be available for selection for this weekend’s clash but says the forward has settled in well since joining from Manchester United in the summer.
She said: ‘She’s home and she’s in an environment that was much needed for her with her family around. She’s not available for selection, not at this moment in time.
‘We still feel we’ve got to get some things right off the pitch. If we want Lauren to be successful, we’ve got to get everything in and around Lauren right. She’s still a young player that has played a lot of football and had substantial injuries.
‘My job is to make sure I keep her on the pitch once she comes back into the team and for now I’m taking the time to build all those areas around her.
‘There is a medical team, a performance team, a technical team all around Lauren and we want to get everything right so we are building Lauren for the long term and not just the opening few weeks of the season.’
‘It is important that we accept the difficulties, that we play through pain and play through fatigue. Then you need to take advantage if you feel the moment to escape the pressure. If you have in the moment the confidence to find the technical solution, you do it but you need to be very aware of all the solutions because if spaces open against Man City, they open up for only a blink of an eye.
‘We don’t need a miracle to compete with them but we need our best performance.’
Able to bring his best performance in our most recent Premier League game was Thiago Silva who earned rave reviews for his contribution to the big win at Tottenham. Tuchel discussed the possibility of the defender, who turned 37 on Wednesday, extending his time at Chelsea into a third season.
‘It’s on him. I cannot answer this question right now but hopefully he can continue to perform at this kind of level. That’s all it needs to stay here. It’s as easy and as clear as that.
‘We want top performances and when you play for Chelsea, you need to deliver, and this is what he’s doing.
Petr Cech – six saves
Half of Cech’s six shoot-out saves came in Champions League finals, with his stops to deny Ivica Olic and Bastian Schweinsteiger in Munich the most important of the 30 shoot-outs we have contested.
He also kept out Ronaldo in Moscow, in defeat, and Leighton Baines in an FA Cup reply which we also lost. His other two shoot-out saves came in the 2009 Community Shield, thwarting Patrice Evra and Ryan Giggs as we ran out comfortable winners.
Lukaku has welcomed Chelsea’s latest initiative as part of our No To Hate campaign, which is the launch of a photo competition inviting fans worldwide to help demonstrate how sport can be a unifying force in society.
‘It’s very important that we as a club can make a statement and take a position because a lot of people look at us for this,’ he continued. ‘We have to take a very strong position against discrimination of all forms and hopefully it can inspire other teams to do the same.
‘From the owner to us players, we’re really putting out a statement that stuff like that should not be tolerated because in our team we have a lot of players that represent the club – different nationalities, different skin colours, different religions, and also in the women’s team where it’s the same.
‘As a club, we should be an example and basically say that whenever a form of discrimination is happening, we’re going to take a strong position and prosecute everything that is happening in the stands.’