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OPINION: Reason why Tuchel should stick with the Lukaku-Werner pairing despite Man City's result.

It was easy for Chelsea fans to be disappointed following the Premier League match against Manchester City on Saturday lunchtime.


The Citizens pressed wisely and tenaciously from the start, driving Chelsea back into their own half and cutting off the counter-attacking options that had proven so successful for the Blues in the previous three encounters.

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The growing friendship between Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner, two players who many fans had hoped to see Tuchel deploy in a front two and who may ideally start a profitable combination in the coming months, should offer supporters optimism.


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Tuchel will need to offer his duo a little more help in the final third if any of this is to happen, especially against a team like Manchester City. Werner and Lukaku were asked to perform miracles much too frequently against a swarm of light blue jerseys, who outnumbered both on many occasions.

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The top two were separated from the rest of the squad until Kai Havertz arrived in the second half, nullifying Chelsea's key offensive weapons and giving City the foundation to sustain possession and apply pressure, resulting to Gabriel Jesus' deflection winner in the 53rd minute.


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The majority of the optimism around Werner and Lukaku working together is based on similar situations at their former teams.


During his two years with Inter Milan at the San Siro, Lukaku had a fantastic connection with Argentine Lautaro Martinez. The dynamic duo anchored Antonio Conte's signature 3-5-2 system, causing havoc for the majority of Serie A defenses. Inter were able to build from the back and bring both wingbacks in Conte's system farther up the pitch to generate overloads because to the pair's technical ability.

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Martinez, as a smaller, nimbler attacker, was content to play in more unconventional positions than Lukaku, holding up the ball, occupying central defenders, and being aerially dominating anytime a cross was delivered into the box.

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Werner was the smaller of a front duo alongside Danish attacker Yussuf Poulsen for RB Leipzig in the Bundesliga under Julian Nagelsmann.


Werner is a completely different striking partner for Lukaku than Martinez. Quicker and more direct, but with less technical ability. Rather than sinking deeper into build-up play, where he is less comfortable, the German excels at stretching defenses and sprinting in behind.

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There will be some tweaks, but with Werner's dogged pressing and speed, it's easy to see why Tuchel would view Werner as a fascinating companion for Lukaku's apparent presence, especially in games where Chelsea wants to defend deeper and strike opponents on the break.


They do, however, require a lot more, as seen by Saturday's events. It's not just about having a midfield runner to add a third man when Chelsea looks to break, but also about bringing the wingbacks into the game to create width in Tuchel's 3-5-2 formation, which is crucial to Chelsea's deep ball development. Guardiola was well aware of this, and City excelled in pinning Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso back for the whole of the game.

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Lukaku and Werner were most likely affected by Mason Mount's absence. The young Englishman has repeatedly demonstrated how important he is to his team tactically, and his ability to locate pockets of space would have given Chelsea another option when looking for Werner and Lukaku storming forward.

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Regardless of who is assigned to assist the three, Thomas Tuchel should strive to keep this new connection going. If the two can recreate the synergy they had with Poulsen and Martinez in the past, Chelsea might have a very interesting combo on their hands.


What are your thoughts on Chelsea's front two of Lukaku and Werner? To discuss the subject, click the Follow button and leave your opinions in the comments area below.

Content created and supplied by: Fridiano (via Opera News )

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