Thomas Tuchel praises one player who “worked like an animal” against Brentford

You don’t expect a manager to have too much praise for his players after a 4-1 defeat, but sometimes it’s the smartest move.

They know they’ve messed up, and sometimes a little consolation can go a long way.

So perhaps that explains Thomas Tuchel’s rather unusual praise of Kai Havertz, who started the game for a Chelsea side that ended up losing 4-1.

“I felt [Havertz] was our strongest player,” Tuchel said in quotes picked up by the Evening Standard. “I think he worked like an animal and was very dangerous. I am very happy with his performance in particular.”

The forward certainly couldn’t be blamed for any of the calamitous defending on show as his team slumped from a 1-0 lead to a 4-1 defeat. But on the other hand he did miss two chances which could have changed the game.

In any case, it seems certain that Havertz will start on Wednesday against Real Madrid after these comments. He has been excellent in recent weeks, and there’s no reason to panic after one defeat.