ESPN journalist James Olley claims that Chelsea would not have gone after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang if manager Thomas had not been the one making transfer decisions at the club.
The retired Gabon international completed a permanent move to Chelsea for €12million (£10.4m), as confirmed by Barcelona, on the deadline day.
It was arguably a sensible move for all parties involved.
Chelsea desperately need more striker options, with youngster Armando Broja being the only natural number nine in Tuchel’s squad, while Barcelona are able to sign Marcos Alonso as part of the deal.
For Aubameyang, joining Chelsea means an opportunity to be a regular starter, having previously lost his place to Robert Lewandowski at Barcelona.
Olley, however, argued that Blues manager Tuchel played the biggest part in this transfer.
“That is a Tuchel signing, make no mistake about that,” the journalist told ESPN FC when speaking about Aubameyang’s Chelsea transfer.
“He’s nowhere near the sort of profile [Chelsea] were trying to sign. They were going for good academy signings and trying to sign players who can fit in now, not 33-year-olds on a two-plus-one-year contract.
“That is a Tuchel deal.
“He’s made these decisions; [Romelu] Lukaku’s going out on loan, [Timo] Werner’s going back to RB Leipzig — these are Tuchel’s decisions.
“For the first time, [he’s] moulding a team in his own image.”
Tuchel is building his own Chelsea squad
While, as Olley pointed out, Tuchel might have pushed for the move, Chelsea were not exactly spoilt for alternative options either.
Blues co-owner and chairman Todd Boehly highlighted that Aubameyang has a proven track record in the Premier League (via the club’s official website), which makes the signing seem like less a gamble.
Aubameyang registered 92 goals in 163 appearances in all competitions for Arsenal and still managed to score 13 goals in 24 appearances for Barcelona.