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UCL: Tuchel pessimistic as Chelsea face ‘biggest challenge’ against Real Madrid

THOMAS Tuchel has admitted that Chelsea face an almost impossible task to advance to the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League.

The champions go to Real Madrid on Tuesday night for the second leg of their quarter-final tie with a 3-1 home deficit, and the Blues manager believes he will need a miracle to overturn it.

Chelsea’s defeat in the first leg at Stamford Bridge last week followed a surprise 4-1 home defeat to Brentford in the Premier League, although Tuchel’s side earned a 6-0 thrashing of Southampton over the weekend.

“It is one of the biggest challenges to perform away at the Bernabeu,” Tuchel said on Monday during his pre-match press conference.

“It is even more difficult if you have to earn a certain result, if you need to win with a minimum of two goals or better or maybe a three-goal difference, that makes it almost impossible and very, very difficult but still it is worth trying.

“We need nothing else than a fantastic script if we want to overcome this.”

Tuchel believes the job is made much harder because his side are up against the experienced Real Madrid, who are the most successful club in the competition’s history with 13 titles.

“The task is incredibly high and the challenge is incredibly high given the circumstances of the first leg and where we play and against whom we play and at what stage we play this kind of match,” added Tuchel, who oversaw victory over Real Madrid in the semi-finals on the way to Chelsea winning the title last season.

“It’s always allowed to dream and it is sometimes important to imagine things and to dream about it but it will not shift the focus from the fact that we need to deliver and we need to be ready tomorrow.”

Tuchel said he believed his face a “huge disadvantage” as Real Madrid have been able to make five substitutions throughout their LaLiga campaign, as opposed to the three-substitute rule in England.

“We face a huge disadvantage in terms of physicality because Real Madrid has a whole year with five changes and we play the most demanding league, we play the most matches throughout the season and throughout 2022 so it is not always easy to play a physical game,” the German said.

“We are a team that needs the physicality, the sharpness, the commitment and the investment to be a special team. We could not implement that enough in the last match.”

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