Lukaku provides missing piece for Chelsea, says Tuchel

Tuchel hailed the Belgian's power and ability to hold the ball up under pressure and get team mates involved in attacks.

Lukaku scored in his first match back at Chelsea to set the Blues on its way to a 2-0 win at Arsenal.   -  REUTERS

Chelsea coach Thomas Tuchel hailed new striker Romelu Lukaku for providing the missing piece in his team, which last year struggled to turn dominance of matches into goals even as it battled its way to Champions League success.

Lukaku scored in his first match back at Chelsea to set the Blues on its way to a 2-0 win at Arsenal as he dominated the Gunners' defenders throughout the 90 minutes.

Tuchel hailed the Belgian's power and ability to hold the ball up under pressure and get team mates involved in attacks.

"I certainly think that nobody likes to play against him," the coach said. "I think his profile gives us something that we did not have so much."

Lukaku's track record in England and Italy plus his determination to succeed at the club he supported as a boy meant he represented the complete package for Chelsea, Tuchel said.

"He's a Chelsea fan and his dream was to make it at this club," the German added.

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The 28-year-old's experience would also help younger players in at the club, he said.

"I hope that it takes pressure off our young guys' shoulders," Tuchel noted.

For the last few minutes of Sunday's win, he opted to bring on Timo Werner, who last year struggled to live up to the reputation he built in Germany, to play alongside Lukaku, offering a glimpse of a potential new strike partnership.

But Tuchel cautioned it was too early to get carried away with Lukaku's strong start.

"It's not the time now for too much praise, it's not the time for too much celebration, we have to keep on going," he added.

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