Super Cup: Tammy Abraham in Chelsea squad despite transfer link to Roma

Tammy Abraham
Roma are looking to close a £34m deal for Abraham
Venue: Windsor Park, Belfast Date: Wednesday, 11 August Time: 20:00 BST
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio 5 live and BBC local radio; text commentary on the BBC Sport website

Tammy Abraham is in Chelsea’s squad for Wednesday’s Super Cup meeting with Villarreal despite being heavily linked with a £34m move to Roma.

The Belgian was in London on Tuesday for the final part of his medical before a £96.5m move from Inter Milan.

“Like with players coming in as well, I will not comment on actual situations of players going out,” said Tuchel.

“Tammy is in the squad. He did some good preparation matches, clearly not happy with the last half of the year and has reason. Maybe it was also my fault not to push him and trust him on the level as other players – and he wants minutes.

“Does he fight his way back into the team where he ended last season or does he want to change club to be a regular starter?

“I can absolutely understand that. It is a normal situation until the transfer window is closed. We will evaluate the situation.”

Abraham, 23, fell out of favour under Tuchel, making just 22 appearances, starting 12, for Chelsea in the Premier League last season.

The England frontman was also excluded from their Champions League final squad after playing just five games in the build-up to their 1-0 success over Manchester City.

Tuchel, though, has “no stress” about Lukaku’s arrival in time for Chelsea’s Premier League opener on Saturday against Crystal Palace.

The 28-year-old will return to Stamford Bridge seven years after leaving for Everton in 2014, where he spent three years before joining Manchester United and then Inter Milan in 2019.

“I am happy if we have the same group again and start the new season with the same group, I will be happy,” said Tuchel.

“We have fantastic scouting, a clear structure at the club and everyone shares the ideas. We always try to improve the squad but at the same time we believe in development of the squad.

“We are in discussions with the board, no hectic, no stress and we go from there.”

Villarreal boss Unai Emery has never lifted the Super Cup, despite winning the Europa League three times as manager of Sevilla.

The former Arsenal and Paris St-Germain manager says he thinks Chelsea will become “the best team in the world” this season, but hopes to take advantage of the fact that several first-choice players are likely to miss Wednesday’s game.

“Chelsea have Italian and English internationals who haven’t arrived back until this week,” said the Spaniard.

“Their starting line-up will not be the same as the Champions League final. Hopefully they misfire from the start.”

Team News

Tuchel said players who featured in the Euros may not start or figure against Villarreal.

“They could start, but can they finish the game? No. Eight days of training after a European final is pretty demanding,” added the German.

“We have to find a mix and the guys who came in early and have more minutes deserve to start. Some of the guys will maybe start, but we will need a scenario of who ends for us.

“It is a competitive match, it is not only about sharing titles, it is the first title we want to win.”

Match Stats

  • This will be Chelsea’s 50th game against Spanish opponents in European competition, but the first time they have faced Villarreal in competitive action.
  • Villarreal are unbeaten in their last 15 European games, the most recent three coming against English opponents in last season’s Europa League. Having beaten Arsenal in the semi-final they edged Manchester United on penalties in the final following a 1-1 draw.
  • Chelsea have lost only two of their last 12 games against Spanish opponents in European competition, including six unbeaten encounters during their Champions League-winning run.
  • This is the 18th consecutive Super Cup game involving an English or Spanish team, with 2003 the last time neither country figured as AC Milan beat Porto 1-0.
  • Chelsea will be appearing in the Super Cup for a fifth time. Since winning their first in 1998 against Real Madrid, the Blues have failed to lift the trophy in each of their last three attempts.
  • Villarreal could become the sixth Spanish team to win the Super Cup, a new record for the most different teams from a single nation to have won the trophy.
  • Edouard Mendy kept nine clean sheets for Chelsea in the 2020-21 Champions League; the most by a goalkeeper in their debut season in the competition.
  • Gerard Moreno was directly involved in 10 goals in 12 games for Villarreal in the 2020-21 Europa League.
  • The last English player to score or assist in a Super Cup final was Gary Cahill, who scored for Chelsea in their 4-1 loss to Atletico Madrid in 2012.
  • Samuel Chukwueze made four assists for Villarreal in the Europa League last season.

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