Chelsea icon Claude Makelele has delivered Thomas Tuchel the perfect secret weapon

Thomas Tuchel says Chelsea will make changes in League Cup

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Chelsea technical mentor Claude Makelele has played a significant role in developing Trevoh Chalobah at Stamford Bridge. Manager Thomas Tuchel now has an impressive young defender with a rare trait, adding another dimension to his prospering defence.

Chalobah has broken into the first team this season, starting the UEFA Super Cup victory over Villarreal and featuring in three of Chelsea’s five Premier League games.

He joined Chelsea at the age of eight and rose through the ranks alongside the likes of Reece James, Fikayo Tomori, Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham.

The 22-year-old thrived on loan at Ipswich Town, Huddersfield Town, before spending last season at Ligue 1 outfit Lorient, racking up 112 appearances across the three moves.

Now part of Tuchel’s senior squad, Chalobah has earned plaudits over his ability to quickly turn defence into attack with pinpoint passing and darting runs into midfield.

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Matt Spiro, the author of Sacre Bleu – From Zidane to Mbappe, A Football Journey, has credited Makelele with supporting Chalobah’s development.

Chalobah first showed signs of confidence bringing the ball out from the defence at Lorient, which Spiro claims made him popular at the French club.

He told the i: “It took him a good few weeks to adapt to his surroundings, but as the season went on, he became increasingly more important to the team.

“What was impressive was his ability to stride forward either from that starting position in defence or from midfield.

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“He could break through the lines and start counter-attacks. It was something he worked on with [Chelsea’s technical mentor] Claude Makelele.

“He didn’t get talked about in the [French] national press, to be honest. But he was absolutely seen as a success at Lorient and, by the second half of the season, became a really important part of their rearguard to help them stay up.

“There was plenty of recognition of him from the fans and local press in Lorient.”

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Chalobah is one of the numerous top-class options among Tuchel’s formidable defence.

Chelsea are yet to concede a goal from open play in the Premier League this season on their way to the top spot.

Mohamed Salah’s penalty equaliser in the 1-1 draw at Anfield is the only goal Tuchel’s side have shipped, which Chalobah has played a part in.

Chelsea could have a natural replacement for Thiago Silva when he leaves if Chalobah continues his promising development.

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