Werner paves the way: Triumph over Guardiola makes Tuchel rave

Werner paves the way
Triumph over Guardiola makes Tuchel rave

A surprising win against designated English champions Manchester City opens up an unexpected title opportunity for Chelsea. Coach Thomas Tuchel can hardly believe his luck. A national player in constant crisis sets the course for the entry into the cup final.

Thomas Tuchel is about to win his first title in his first year as a coach in England. The German coach reached the FA Cup final on Saturday with Chelsea with a deserved 1-0 (0-0) win over Manchester City with Pep Guardiola and was the first German coach to reach the final of the oldest soccer cup. “It was a very, very strong performance from us,” said the 47-year-old enthusiastically about his team. “I am happy and proud.”

In the final, Tuchel and the Champions League semi-finalist will face the winner of the game Leicester City against FC Southampton, which will be played on Sunday (7.30 p.m.). For the Guardiola team, however, it was the first setback of the season. The star ensemble had to write off the first of four possible titles due to the semi-final defeat.

The former Bayern coach changed the Citizens to eight positions compared to the 2-1 success in the Champions League at Borussia Dortmund and also left national player Ilkay Gündogan on the bench for the time being. Therefore, Man City did not dominate the game as usual. Chelsea were very focused in defense around Antonio Rüdiger and had the best opportunity in the first half through Ben Chilwell (19th).

After the break, Guardiola also had to replace midfield star Kevin De Bruyne. The Belgian left the field injured. The next setback for Manchester City came in the 55th minute. After a pass from Werner Hakim Ziyech only had to push the ball over the line – 1-0 for Chelsea. Four minutes later, Ziyech should have added more. But the Moroccan failed because of the former Düsseldorf goalkeeper Zack Steffen.

With the substitution of midfielder Gündogan, the Guardiola-Elf became stronger and came to the first chances: After a corner Ruben Dias headed just over the Chelsea goal (69th). However, the success of the Tuchel team was no longer in danger. “We wanted to be brave today with and without the ball. We did it. I’m so happy,” said Tuchel.