October 23, 2021

Chelsea star Hudson-Odoi on Tuchel’s tactics & how he’d never played new wing-back role before Wolves draw

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The England international was included from the off against Wolves, with the newly-appointed coach tweaking the Blues’ approach in his first game

Callum Hudson-Odoi has revealed the draw with Wolves was the first time he’d played in a wing-back role as he adapted to a change of position following Thomas Tuchel’s appointment as head coach.

The Blues, having parted company with club legend Frank Lampard, have handed their managerial reins to a German tactician.

Former Borussia Dortmund and Paris Saint-Germain boss Tuchel arrived in west London a matter of hours before a Premier League home date with Wolves was taken in.

He had little time to prepare for that contest, but still took the decision to tinker with the system he inherited from Lampard.

Chelsea, who enjoyed title success under Antonio Conte when going with three at the back, tried something different when hosting Nuno’s men.

A 0-0 draw was played out, but Hudson-Odoi – in just his fourth top-flight start of the season – impressed in an unfamiliar position that required him to track back more than he is accustomed to.

The England international winger told the Blues’ official website on a change in approach: “It was something new for me.

“It was my first time trying it yesterday [in training] and I felt alright playing in it, it wasn’t a problem for me. It was good trying to play that position and no matter where the manager asks me to play I will try to do my best.”

Hudson-Odoi added on what Tuchel is demanding from him: “He wants me to be direct and to keep getting at full-backs and defenders as much as possible.

“He knows all the attacking players can be free and score goals and he wants us to be direct and keep pushing and try to get goals and get assists. He told me to work up and down that line, be direct and stay as high and wide as possible.

“I try to break the line and keep doing different movements to get the ball. He wants us to keep going in behind and find good passes, find different ways of breaking teams instead of trying to beat them every time with the ball.

“I felt really fit throughout the whole game, I felt really sharp, trying to be direct as much as possible and trying to get at my defender as much as possible, and I feel as a collective we did really well.

“We were working hard, trying to break their back five as quick as possible. At times it was very difficult. When we were getting behind them they were recovering so well it was hard to make that extra pass to break it.

“I think we have to be more clinical with our crossing and more clinical with our passing. End product just to finish it off. We can hopefully improve on it on Sunday.”

Chelsea’s next outing will see them play host to Burnley, with 20-year-old Hudson-Odoi hoping to keep his starting berth for that contest and continue catching the eye of a new coach.