Chelsea (3-4-3) Prince Adegoke; Charlie Wiggett, Brodi Hughes, Bashir Humphreys; Richard Olise (Josh Brooking 54), Ben Elliott (c), Charlie Webster, Derrick Abu (Leo Castledine 81); Dion Rankine, Jude Soonsup-Bell, Edwin Andersson (Silko Thomas 72)
Unused subs Ted Curd, Alex Kpakpe
Scorers Wiggett 2; Hughes 59
Booked Abu 28
Brighton & Hove Albion (4-4-2) Toby Bull; Casper Nilsson, Ben Jackson, Odel Offiah, Zak Sturge; Matt Everitt (c) (Jaami Qureshi 69), Toby Collyer, Samy Chouchane (Jack Hinshelwood 69), Andy Moran; Zak Emmerson, Marcus Ifill
Unused subs Todd Miller, Tommy Reid, Josh Duffus
Scorers Ifill 23, 77; Emmerson 85
Booked Jackson 26
Referee Valentine Anekwe
The Brazilian has been absent since the win over Spurs a month ago, a game he exited during the first half with a thigh injury. Having returned to outside training last week, Thiago Silva joined his team-mates on the grass yesterday.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference and ahead of a final training session before tomorrow’s game, Tuchel reported the trip to Anfield will come too soon for Thiago Silva. Callum Hudson-Odoi, who came off at half-time on Sunday, is fine, however.
‘Thiago made his first training with the team but did not finish the last exercise, not because of any pain but just to be aware of taking a risk,’ said the boss.
‘I assume he will train today but he is not at 100 per cent so he will not join the squad for Liverpool.
‘Everyone else is available. Callum has no issue at all. He was training full with the team yesterday.
‘Tammy had some problems yesterday on his ankle again. Let’s see how this works out today.’
Timo Werner was the most popular first goalscorer choice in February, with 45 per cent of all fans selecting him in their predictions. He was followed by Mason Mount and Olivier Giroud, who were selected by 16 per cent and 12 per cent. All three delivered goals during the month but, perhaps surprisingly, only two per cent of fans chose to select Jorginho to score first, despite the midfielder netting from the spot twice in February, rewarding those fans with 50 points for their selection.
The Blues enjoyed the majority of possession in every match we played last month and fans were confident in the capability of the team, predicting an average possession of 64 per cent for the month – just one per cent off the actual figure! Will the run continue in March?
Play Predictor is now open for our next match against Liverpool for fans to make their predictions to start the month well and give yourself the best chance to win.
There’s not only a monthly prize on offer to the top scoring fan, but also individual match prizes available for the top scoring fan after every game. See if you can win this month.
Hayes gave an update on Millie Bright and Fran Kirby’s fitness and confirmed they are both available to play tomorrow…
‘It’s fair to say that this time of the year players are going to be managing situations.’
‘Millie is a player that will put herself through absolutely anything to play games of football and the realities are that she took a knock before the international camp, she was just having some issues around her hamstring tendon and it’s taken a little bit of time to settle down, but it’s settled down and she’s fit to play.
‘Fran is fine. In the Bristol game she said to me at half-time that she was struggling a little bit, she came off after 60 minutes because she couldn’t continue in the game and she’s taken the right amount of time to get it right during the international break and she too is fit to play.’
It’s a busy month ahead for Hayes and her team with at least six fixtures in March, however, the Chelsea manager is relishing the opportunity to be competing for trophies in all competitions
‘I want to play in the biggest competitions and I want to be at the latter stages, I don’t want to be thinking about spare weekends in any tournament so I’m really happy that we’ve got that and we must embrace it and relish the challenges ahead.
‘I approach every game the same I do every week, I’m thoroughly professional about every game we play and to do it any differently just sells the team short.
‘I do have a mindset that you have to train every day like it’s a final and we take our work seriously here and the players have to apply themselves every week, not just Champions League week.
‘There’s always big conversations around Chelsea and the Champions League but the realities are that we compete for trophies every year and it doesn’t matter what trophy it is, we just want to be competing and getting to finals and winning big games and that’s what we’ve done in the time since I’ve been here.’
Changing how you are as a coach is key to his role believes the German, as is maintaining a good connection with all the players, and in order to do that he makes sure he listens when there is the chance to discuss leadership with others.
‘Sometimes it was intuition and sometimes it was planned but I don’t follow a guidance, I don’t follow a leadership book or something else,’ Tuchel said of his management decisions.
‘When there is time I talk a lot to people who are in leadership roles and in different roles, and I try to learn every day.
‘I talk to unknown persons, teachers of classes, the person who runs the school of my daughters, people who sell stuff. This can be a half-an-hour talk.
‘It is not important that you only talk to the biggest names out there in the world. It is about leadership from people and that can include teachers and anybody else who is in responsibility for people and for groups, and there you can get inspired.