Thomas Tuchel has hit back at criticism of his striker-less setup in Tuesday night’s 2-1 defeat to Southampton.
Raheem Sterling gave the west Londoners the lead on the south coast after 23 minutes, but Romeo Lavia equalized just five minutes later after being left unmarked on the edge of the box from a corner.
On the verge of halftime, Southampton actually appeared more likely to score a second goal thanks to a brilliant play from the home team that saw Adam Armstrong score.
When it was claimed that Chelsea might not have had a focal point up top, Tuchel reacted angrily, believing that his team’s lack of potency was far from the case at St Mary’s.
‘No this is totally the wrong question to ask today,’ he responded when asked about Chelsea’s lack of an out-and-out number nine prior to Armando Borja’s late introduction.
‘Defending these goals has nothing to do with attack. We scored, we had chances, it was enough. We could have a clean sheet, we could stay at 1-1, everything was OK.
‘But we are not tough enough as a team. It’s not a question of striker or no striker or no focal point or whatever. That’s the wrong question for me at the moment.’
When it was suggested that Raheem Sterling worked hard up top, Tuchel again seemed irritated by the line of questioning and interrupted: ‘He is a team player but as a team we are not strong enough at the moment. Pointless. Wrong question.’
Tuchel’s side have now dropped eight points after just five games, also having suffered a humbling 3-0 defeat at Elland Road.