Tuchel praises Lampard after reaching Champions League final

Chelsea Head Coach Thomas Tuchel has praised and thanked his predecessor Frank Lampard for helping the Blues reach the Champions League final. Having replaced Lampard midway through the season, Tuchel has sparked a remarkable turnaround at Chelsea, as the Blues have reached the finals of FA Cup and Champions League, and look certain to finish in top four.

Speaking to reporters ahead of the Arsenal game, Thomas Tuchel credited Frank Lampard for helping the team get through the Champions League group stages. The German added “You can only arrive in a Champions League final if you make it through the group stage and Frank had an amazing record in the group stage.”

This lays the foundations for getting to the final and I will never forget this. From the first day when I came in here I was aware that Frank created his own legacy at Chelsea and it is well deserved. When I came in it was halfway through the season and it was about continuing the job he had done.”

He is one of the big, big players and the key figures of this club and when you think about Chelsea you think about Frank Lampard.”

One or two days after I arrived he sent me a message and wished me all the best – that was very nice to receive and it was very polite. I was very happy to get that message.”

The German confirmed Mateo Kovacic will not be available for Arsenal game, and will most likely be fit for the FA Cup final against Leicester City on Saturday. Tuchel added “He is not ready for tomorrow, we have to postpone it to Wembley. His personal race is on to make it to the squad for Wembley.”

Billy Gilmour had to step up now because we miss Kova so much and we play normally always with a double-six, so we were rotating constantly between N’Golo, Jorgi and Kova. Once we miss Kova now for so many games, so many weeks, it was on Billy to step up and I was very happy that he could deliver when it was needed.”

So full credit for that, but Kova is a big loss with his ability to drive with the ball, his speed on the ball, without the ball. Kova is such a positive character and unique player, a real fighter on who you can always rely in games and training.”

We really miss him, he is a good match with Jorgi and N’Golo in all combinations. So it’s a big miss and I can’t wait until he’s back in full team training. He’s taken some steps in the right direction and I hope he can rejoin team training after our game with Arsenal.

Source: Sky Sports, Chelsea FC

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