Chelsea loanee interests Thomas Tuchel, says “he reminded me of Michael Ballack”

Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been offered a route back at Chelsea after a glowing compliment from his manager.

The midfielder is on loan at Fulham after falling down pecking order at Chelsea under former manager Frank Lampard.

Thomas Tuchel said: “I was quite a fan of him when he was younger.

“He reminded me of Michael Ballack. There were links with him moving to Germany. We are well aware of his talent.

“I don’t know why things have not worked out as he wished but now he is doing good.

“I cannot judge him from TV and hearsay. I love to work with players then to give my opinion.”

Tuchel hands Billy Gilmour hope of being selected against Fulham as Kovacic is ruled out

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has given Billy Gilmour hope of featuring against local rivals Fulham in Saturday’s Premier League clash.

The promising Scotsman has only played sporadically under Tuchel with N’Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic and Jorginho being picked ahead of the youngster.

With Kovacic unavailable, Tuchel was asked if Billy Gilmour has a chance of playing against Fulham tomorrow so Kante or Jorginho can have a rest.

Tuchel said he is pleased with Gilmour’s displays in training, and he may feature against Fulham.

He said: “N’Golo feels very good, Jorgi looked very good and in training again today the guys are super professional, they know that we miss Kova a lot so I have the feeling Jorgi and N’Golo step up.

“[Gilmour] looked very good today in training so I was quite impressed. The last decision is made today so in the evening, the afternoon or maybe tomorrow morning, but Billy is in the squad, he was very close to playing the last games some minutes so he is in good shape.”

Real Madrid officials desperate for Marcelo to feature against Chelsea as Zidane reveals plan to bring star to London

Real Madrid officials are reportedly making frantic efforts to ensure that Marcelo feature in the crucial enconter with Chelsea next Wednesday

They are however confident that the defender will be available for their Champions League semi final second leg against Chelsea next week.

It follows a report this week in El Mundo that the Brazilian would not be available for selection due to having to count votes in Madrid’s regional elections on Tuesday.

The report claims that Los Blancos have been working with the city’s electoral authorities to reverse the decision, which would see Marcelo be working on election day for the regional votes.

However, on Friday, Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane said that the player would be available for selection in spite of this situation and would be able to join his teammates on Wednesday.

Zidane told reporters on Friday: “Marcelo will be able to fulfil his obligations on Tuesday and then join his teammates the following day.”

Meanwhile, latest reports claim that the Brazilian will be able to play in the game after all – but it will come at a cost to Los Blancos.

The player will still have to be involved in the electoral process on Tuesday but can travel to London via a private jet the following day.

Diario AS highlight that such a move will cost Madrid €20k, which is said to have caused great anger at the club.

The Brazilian started the first leg in a left wing-back position and that could subsequently be the case again in London.

Tuchel provides injury update on Mateo Kovacic, Antonio Rudiger, rules two Chelsea stars vs Fulham

Thomas Tuchel confirmed Mateo Kovacic has suffered a ‘little setback’ in training and will not be able to feature as hoped against Fulham, while the knock Toni Rudiger sustained in Madrid will keep him out of the weekend game.

Mateo Kovacic will miss his sixth game in a row, according to the Blues boss.

“Unfortunately he’s still injured,” said Tuchel.

“He trained with us but he’s still not fully confident. He felt something at the end of the training so he’s not available.

“Before training today, we thought Kova has a big chance to join us latest for Madrid, maybe even for Fulham, so now we have a little setback with him. I don’t want to be too negative. Let’s see how he feels tomorrow.

“All other players are available except for Toni Rudiger who got injured in the last minute of the Madrid game. I am quite positive for Toni [being available] for Wednesday.”

Real Madrid dealt huge injury blow as key player is ruled out of London clash against Chelsea

Real Madrid have been dealt a huge injury blow with news that right-back Dani Carvajal will miss the rest of the season through injury.

Not long after his third appearance since returning from another multi-week injury, the star defender suffered an injury in the 1-1 draw with Chelsea this Tuesday.

He is automatically out of the crucial second leg encounter against Chelsea in the Champions League semi final.

The 29-year-old has been limited to just 15 appearances across all competitions this season due to injury problems and he is not likely to return again this campaign.

As per Diario AS, via Football Espana, a muscular injury in his right leg will sideline him for the remaining weeks of the season.

The Spain international’s season has been blighted by muscular injuries and he has been sidelined for a combined three months since October, when he suffered an injury to his knee ligaments.

He has missed a total of 29 matches this season and Lucas Vazquez has stepped into the breach at right-back over those months – although he too is also out for the remainder of the campaign.

It is likely that either Nacho Fernandez or Alvaro Odriozola will now deputise in the position for the remainder of the campaign.

Photo Credit: realmadriden/Twitter

Former Chelsea star blasts Eden Hazard

Damien Duff has questioned Hazard and his fitness, saying that he cost Madrid €150m yet arrived at the Santiago Bernabeu in the summer of 2019 overweight.

The Premier League winner in Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea team said: “He’s never been a great professional and he’s never had the drive of [Lionel] Messi or [Cristiano] Ronaldo.

“If he did, we’d probably be mentioning him alongside those two players. He turned up for his first season at Real Madrid, as a Galactico that cost €150m, overweight. Fat. Call it what you want.”

Hazard has struggled with injury and failed to make much of an impact since joining Madrid in the summer of 2019 from Chelsea, where he had proved himself as one of Europe’s most exciting players in the previous seven years.

The Belgian has suffered eleven different physical problems throughout his time in Spain, but looks to be on the mend after making cameo appearances against Real Betis and, this week, Chelsea.

Lionel Messi set to sign new Barcelona depite PSG’s lucrative offer

Lionel Messi s edging closer to committing his future to Barcelona after the club offered him a TEN-YEAR deal, according to reports.

The mini maestro is out of contract this summer following last summer’s high-profile fallout.

Messi, 33, wanted to leave at the end of last season following the turmoil on and off the pitch but Barca demanded £625million to let him leave.

Joan Laporta has since been re-appointed as the club’s president and has been working tooth and nail to keep Messi at his boyhood club.

According to the Times, a lucrative new contract is on the table for the superstar following talks between Laporta and Messi’s father.

It gives Messi the option of staying at the Nou Camp in the short-term before having a final career swansong in the MLS.

During the week, according to TNT Sports Brazil, Paris Saint-Germain presented an offer to the Barcelona captain.

The Ligue 1 giants offered the Argentine a contract for two seasons with the option of a third.

PSG believe that the offer they’ve presented to Messi can’t be matched by Barcelona from a financial perspective, and from a sporting perspective they can point to the fact that they made the final of last season’s Champions League and are in the semi-finals this season having eliminated Barcelona themselves in the last 16.

(Video) Jose Mourinho secures another job days after his sacking from Tottenham

Former Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has taken up a punditry role with radio station talkSPORT after claiming he is “missing football already”.

The 58-year-old was relieved of his duties by Spurs chief Daniel Levy last week, just days before the club’s appearance in the Carabao Cup final, having overseen an underwhelming campaign.

The north Londoners were dumped out of the Europa League by Dinamo Zagreb under Mourinho’s watch and are unlikely to clinch a place in the top four, missing out on Champions League football for a second successive season.

Despite pocketing £20m in compensation from Spurs, Mourinho has taken up a new role with talkSPORT after admitting that he ‘misses football already’.

In a clip posted to the broadcaster’s Twitter page, Mourinho said: “I am totally absorbed by football. I just love to work. In this moment, I am not working for a week and I am missing it already.”

Photo Credit: talkSPORT/Twitter

“He caused us a lot of problems. He was a nuisance”- Real Madrid defender complains about Chelsea star

Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane has described N’Golo Kante’s tireless performance in the 1-1 Champions League semi-final first-leg draw as a “nuisance”.

It was hardly a surprise that 30-year-old midfielder was named the man of the match on Tuesday evening.

The Chelsea Chronicle report that the midfielder was involved in more duels (21) and completed more dribbles (6) than anyone else on the pitch.

Even Varane, who should be familiar with such an industrious display from his fellow France international, was impressed.

“N’Golo? He was a nuisance, that’s clear,” the Real Madrid defender told RMC Sport in his post-match interview.

“At this stage of the season, physicality is a determining factor, and it’s true that he runs a lot [laughs].

“He caused us a lot of problems, he managed to break the lines, he also has this ability to recover balls.

“We know the quality of this team, and he is one of their strengths.”

Kante’s energy was key to Chelsea’s arguably winning the midfield battle in that game.

Photo Credit: ChampionsLeague/Twitter

Tuchel reveals how he was forced into last-minute tactical change after Real Madrid Changed their usual formation

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has revealed his side were forced into a last-minute tactical change after seeing Real Madrid’s line-up on Tuesday night.

In his post-match press conference Tuchel confirmed he was not prepared for Real lining up in a 3-5-2 formation.

Speaking to reporters, he said: “So we prepared [for] a 4-3-3.

“When we saw the line-up we had a quick talk in the dressing room to slightly change who has to do what with the two strikers and the three in the middle.

“We had to adapt.”

Real lined up with three centre-backs, a packed midfield and Karim Benzema partnered by Vinicius Junior upfront.