Trevoh Chalobah was amazed when Tuchel told him he’d be staying this summer
Chelsea starlet Trevoh Chalobah has revealed he was surprised when Thomas Tuchel told him he was going to be staying with the first team this season after their opening Premier League game of the campaign against Crystal Palace.
Chalobah was a surprise inclusion in the Chelsea starting line-up against Palace, but the academy graduate shone and even bagged himself a goal during the 3-0 victory.
The 22-year-old central defender, who had spent the last three seasons on loan at Ipswich, Huddersfield and Lorient, was widely expected to be sent out for a fourth season with Chelsea having several experienced players in the same position.
But after putting some outstanding performances in pre-season, as well as during the UEFA Super Cup against Villarreal, Chalobah was told that he would remain at the club.
‘I spoke to the manager between the Palace and Arsenal games and he told me he wanted me to stay, so I moved over to the first-team building that week,’ he told Chelsea FC.
‘Before that I was changing over at the Academy, but now I’ve fully moved over. It was a nice feeling when the manager told me. He spoke to me after training and told me how well I’d done, that I’d taken my chance in pre-season and in the games. He said he thinks I can be a good asset to the team and learn from the other players and support them.
Chalobah has impressed his manager this season
‘Even until the day he told me I didn’t really believe it would happen. Even after the Super Cup I thought he’d probably want me to go on loan. After the Palace game it was a bit half-and-half, but until he pulled me into the office and gave me the news I couldn’t really believe it.’
Chalobah has been deployed at centre back for Chelsea this season, but has admitted that he feels comfortable playing in other positions too, should Tuchel look to use him elsewhere.
‘When I first went on loan to Ipswich I was a centre back, after playing there in the Academy, but going on loan is about adapting to different managers and they wanted me to play in midfield,’ he said.
‘It was the same at Huddersfield and Lorient, but I had in the back of my head that I want to be a centre-back and I showed that this pre-season in the games I played.
‘I can fill out a role in the midfield as well if needed, it’s good to have that versatility and for a manager to have options. To play in midfield you need to be good on the ball and that’s one of my main things, but obviously you need that at the back as well here, being comfortable on the ball, aiming to play out through the likes of Jorginho and Kante.’