Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel told he made big mistake in Romelu Lukaku treatment

Tuchel on Lukaku

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Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has been warned that he committed a major mistake with his treatment of Romelu Lukaku. Tuchel dropped the Belgian striker from the squad to face Liverpool in the wake of an explosive interview that saw him reveal his unhappiness with life at the Blues.

Lukaku returned to Chelsea in the summer transfer window for a club-record transfer fee from Inter Milan.

But so far, he has found life back in the Premier League more challenging than expected, with an ankle injury derailing his progress.

Tuchel opted to manage his star striker on his return from that injury, which prompted concern from the 28-year-old over his playing time.

Amid those concerns, Lukaku gave an interview to Sky Sport Italia in which he questioned Tuchel’s decision making.

The Chelsea manager’s response was swift, with Lukaku being dropped for the crucial clash with Liverpool on Sunday.

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The striker has now returned to the squad having made an public apology, with Tuchel attempting to draw a line under the matter.

But while Lukaku is now back available for selection, former Arsenal star Paul Merson believes that the German made a huge error by leaving him out of Chelsea’s biggest game of the season.

“Chelsea had to beat Liverpool to have any chance of winning the Premier League. But for me, he’s chopped his nose off to spite his face,” Merson told Sky Sports.

“Lukaku is going to play for Chelsea again so why not play him against Liverpool? It’s not like he’s never going to play for Chelsea again.

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“If that was the case and he’s not going to play for Chelsea again, then I could understand it, but if not, why do it?

“You are better off throwing him to the wolves and playing him, in my opinion. If he then doesn’t play well, the Chelsea fans will soon let him know. I’d have gone that way, personally.”

Merson also believes that leaving Lukaku out has cost Chelsea dearly in the title race, with the Blues now 10 points behind leaders Manchester City

“What are Chelsea getting out of him when he’s left out? They had to win that football match against Liverpool. They just bought Lukaku for £90m,” he added.

“He is the marquee signing. They bought him for these kinds of games, the big games. They bought him to face Liverpool, not Brighton at home.

“It was the easy option to leave him out and I bet Lukaku couldn’t believe his luck. He needed a trial by the fans.

“Chelsea had to go and beat Liverpool and then Man City to have the slightest of chances of winning the title. Now, I’d be shocked if they went and won it from here.

“That’s why they needed to play Lukaku. They needed him and they needed to win that game.”

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