Tuchel claims he is tempted to hand surprise start to this Chelsea star vs Liverpool

Tuchel claims he is tempted to hand surprise start to this Chelsea star vs Liverpool

Thomas Tuchel has explained that he feels “tempted” to play Reece James in the Carabao Cup final against Liverpool. The match will take place tomorrow at the Wembley Stadium, which would give the German manager’s side a huge opportunity to add another trophy to their collection.

The 22-year-old defender returned to training recently after being on the sidelines since late December. He picked up an issue in his hamstring during the 1-1 draw to Brighton and Hove Albion. His availability would be a major boost for the Blues since they do not have any natural wingbacks on the right-hand side of the defence.

Speaking in the pre-match presser (h/t Chelsea official website), Tuchel has conveyed that James looked really good during the two training sessions they had so far. The boss added that a final decision would be made after the next drill but hinted that he could be “crazy enough” to play the wingback tomorrow.

“He [James] looked brilliant in the last two training sessions. Let’s wait another session, and see if I’m crazy enough to put him on the pitch, or if the reasonable side of me wins and we go step by step. It would be a huge step, but honestly yesterday and today he looked so strong and confident and involved in training, you are tempted to do it.”

Should James play?

The prospect of playing the English right-wingback seems really enticing, considering how good his performances were before the injury. He was arguably our best player this season until the setback and having him back for the final would certainly be a dream scenario.

That being said, we must look at the long term and take it slow as the Blues star has been out on the sidelines for almost two months. After all, we would want to utilise his services to the best for the remainder of the season and prevent a relapse of any kind.

Should Reece James play against Liverpool tomorrow? (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Then again, it depends on the fitness and medical department, and what their assessment would be ahead of the match. The safest option seems like bringing him off the bench for a few games until he regains match fitness.

A cup final, however, seems like too big a stage to start doing this and perhaps, us fans should prepare for a situation where we carry on with James for another weekend.

It will be interesting to see the lineup ahead of the League Cup final against the Reds tomorrow. Let’s hope that the England international enjoys a great time during the final session to put himself in the best possible shape for Sunday’s clash.

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