UEFA Champions League defending Champions, Chelsea began their campaign on a winning note as they stinged Russian league Champions Zenit St Petersburg 1-0 at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday 14th September, 2021 courtesy Romelu Lukaku’s lone goal.
Chelsea struggled to send home the Russian champions in their first Champions League match without a point after last year’s final in Porto, beating Manchester City.
During th post match conference, Thomas Tuchel expressed his thoughts about his hitman “I don’t want to be the mood breaker now. We won games also without Romelu and we produced results. But he was the type of guy we were missing in our team and the type of profile. Not only for his talent but the personality. He is a super humble guy, he loves football and training and is such a good communicator in the dressing room…”
TT, as he is fondly called further disclosed that the striker is open to everybody and builds a particular atmosphere and energy in the team that the club is also happy and proud of. Hence, it’s the type of thing the club want to have cause they believe in his positive spirit.
Speaking on, the former PSG boss added that the atmosphere and the spirit presented by Lukaku is a type the club had in their previous encounter last year that saw the team reach the finals and ended up being crowned Champions. Tuchel see it as a pertinent criteria to emulate and press forward again with it.
Romelu, with all this qualities in him, added to the club’s own and as a fact a person who loves Chelsea, as such vested with the knowledge of what the club stands for.
The visitors had their first important chance in the 38 minutes of the game as Yaroslav Rakitskyi curled a short in his left foot directly to the waiting hands of Chelsea goalkeeper, Edouard Mendy while Lukaku looped with his head over.
Chelsea buckled up immediately after the first half break and set three quick opportunities as Hakim Ziyech, Lukaku and Antonio Rudiger went very close to breaking the wedlock.
The long awaited moment of the match came on 69 minutes when Lukaku contested in the air with his head to bury in the back of the net from a high coming Cesar Azpilicueta cross, sending the home team to take the lead.
Lukaku takes to Stamford Bridge more than just talent according to Tuchel. Similarly, the player has brought the belief. He’s a go-getter himself as such, has the belief and he takes pressure of opponents shoulders around him as he balance and contest for ball. He has the personality not to be impatient, a very confident striker.
The former Inter Milan striker is focused and concentrates in a very high level which has added so much to what the club already had and everyone at Chelsea is happy.
Chelsea did not have many chances or passes and deliveries to Lukaku, but owing to his calibre, he never lost fate, kept on being patient till the winning goal moment showed forth. This are kind of quality that places him among classification of a world-class striker.
Zenit St Petersburg almost levelled scores from Artem Dzyuba’s effort on 80 minutes of the game as he slid in but was unable to have enough access on Sardar Azmoun’s cross.
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