Thomas Tuchel Makes Jorginho, N’Golo Kante & Mateo Kovacic Admission Amid Ballon d’Or Talk – Sports Illustrated

Thomas Tuchel believes Chelsea midfielders N’Golo Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic are all fully deserving of their recent spotlight following impressive performances.

It’s been a constant battle and selection dilemma for Tuchel since his arrival in west London. Playing a three-back wing-back system, there is only room for two of the three each game. 

All three enjoyed a successful European Championships campaign with their respective nations, with Jorginho coming out on top to secure the European double with club and country after Italy beat England on penalties in the final at Wembley on July 11.

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Jorginho’s name has been mentioned as a possible contender for the Ballon d’Or award after growing into the spotlight during the Euros where he was outstanding for the Azzurri.

N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic have now reported back for pre-season duty under Tuchel’s tutelage, Jorginho still holidaying, and Tuchel has been full of praise for the trio. He has claimed they would all be helpful for ‘any team in the world’.

What did Thomas Tuchel say?

As Chelsea got to grips with their return to pre-season, Tuchel spoke to the official club website about the midfield trio.

“Absolutely,” replied the Blues boss over Kante, Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic sending messages following their spotlight, in particular Jorginho with suggestions of a Ballon d’Or nomination, “and it’s good that they talk about our players first of all, and that it shifts a little bit and the guys like Jorgi and like N’Golo Kante are in the spotlight, because they are so, so useful and so, so helpful for any team in the world. And we are so lucky to have them.

“Mateo Kovacic is another of that kind, he has the same mentality, the same ability, so we are absolutely happy to have these three midfielders. They’re such a big help to any team in the world. Their approach to football is they’re true team players. They are true helpers. They make things easy for the others, they don’t hide from a lot of work, putting in a lot of effort for others.

“This is a fantastic message to football in general, that these guys come to the spotlight. They’re famous for teamwork. This is good, it sends the right message.”


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