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Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has been told if he continues to attempt to build a new-look defence with players from abroad it will cost his side a chance of winning the league.
The Blues lost Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen at the start of the summer when their contracts expired, with Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso linked with moves to Barcelona too. Thus, the priority at Stamford Bridge has been signing defenders.
Kalidou Koulibaly was announced as the club’s first defensive recruit, joining from Napoli in a deal worth £33million, whilst they are edging closer to securing long-term target Jules Kounde from Sevilla. Paris Saint-Germain defender Presnel Kimpembe also remains a target.
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However, former Blues defender Glenn Johnson has told Tuchel that he can "kiss the title goodbye" if he builds a backline full of players that aren't Premier League proven. He told Bettingodds.com: "If they've almost got a brand new defence then that could hamper them initially.
"However, if they can get players with Premier League experience, then it might not hinder them as much. If you get a couple of players that don't know the Premier League and they all can’t gel at once then that may potentially lose them the fight.
"If you sign four players from outside the Premier League for example, then one of them is going to flop. That's just a fact. You're not going to get four new defenders that are going to be 10 out of 10 from the moment they arrive.
“If they buy a number of defenders without Premier League experience, then they can kiss the title goodbye straight away." Of last season’s crop of defenders, Tuchel will still be working with Thiago Silva, Malang Sarr and Trevoh Chalobah are expected to remain though.
The former PSG boss also is considering integrating academy graduate Levi Colwill into his plans following his successful spell out on loan at Huddersfield Town last season. But the young prospect is attracting plenty of interest from elsewhere due to his desire to receive assurances over regular game time, according to reports.
Tuchel is also keen to strengthen his frontline further before the start of the season despite signing Raheem Sterling from Manchester City previously. The Athletic report that they have enquired about the availability of Newcastle forward Allan Saint-Maximin recently, though it remains to be seen whether they act on that interest.
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- Chelsea FC
- Thomas Tuchel
- Premier League
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