Thomas Tuchel warns Chelsea after Champions League loss: We could get 'hammered' at Real Madrid
Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has warned his players that the Champions League quarterfinal tie against Real Madrid could be over if they play as badly as they did in their 3-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.
Madrid striker Karim Benzema scored two headers in three first-half minutes before adding a third goal after half-time when he pounced on a mistake by Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy and defender Antonio Rudiger, to give the LaLiga giants a big advantage heading into the second leg at the Bernabeu on April 12.
Chelsea have now conceded seven goals in their last two matches and Tuchel said the reigning European champions cannot continue their poor form.
"If we keep playing like this we will lose at Southampton [in the Premier League on Saturday] and then we will get hammered at the Bernabeu," he told BT Sport after the game.
Tuchel was then asked at his postmatch news conference if the tie was still alive and he replied: "Today, is this [tie] alive with this performance? No, not at the moment.
"We have to find ourselves again, I don't know where we have been since the international break. Tonight was a repetition of the second half against Brentford in a quarterfinal against Real Madrid.
Five days, seven goals conceded. I don't think there is a deeper reason or it. It's alarming."With everything the game demands, you cannot expect a result from this kind of performance.
We were so far off our level, tactically, individually, in shape, in challenges. We tried to play in a new formation and killed the game off with a big mistake."It's never on one player or players, it's on all of us, including myself.
Individually we lost shape and sharpness. Since the international break, we have obviously not looked the same and I don't really have an explanation. We came from a long winning streak where we were really competitive, but the first half was by far not good enough."
Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen added it was "not normal" for them to concede seven goals in two games.
"It's not just about this game, we did it as well at the weekend," he said. "We have to fix it, and we have to do it quick."
Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti praised Benzema for his stunning performance and said the France international is "better every day, like wine."
The second leg will take place next Tuesday as both teams look to book a place in the Champions League semifinals.