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SOCCER

Tuchel accepts Barcelona-linked Christensen may leave Chelsea

Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen, who is a free agent in the summer, appears to be set for an end-of-season move to the Camp Nou.

Tuchel accepts Barcelona-linked Christensen may leave Chelsea
PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images

Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel is aware Andreas Christensen could be set to depart Stamford Bridge, with the defender seemingly bound for LaLiga.

Tuchel conceded that Christensen may have already decided to leave the European and world champions for pastures new at the end of this season, but made clear he wants the 25-year-old centre-back to stay.

The Denmark defender is believed to be on the verge of agreeing terms with Barcelona.

"We think it's best for him to stay"

Speaking at a media conference ahead of the Blues' Premier League fixture at Norwich City on Thursday, Tuchel said when asked about Christensen's future: "It's in doubt, no?

"We hear the rumours and the situation with Andreas has clear for many weeks and we are not happy about it, because we think that it's best for him to stay and we rely heavily on him.

"He did not sign yet, so you cannot not communicate. This is also a signal to us and communication from his side is that he did not sign until now, so we have to consider the possibility that he leaves us.

"Will we like it? No. Will we live with it? Yes. Things are not personal [and] never should be personal, but this can happen and I have no further information."

James doubtful for Norwich clash, Tuchel reveals

Tuchel also confirmed Reece James is a doubt for the trip to Carrow Road after suffering a muscle injury in the 4-0 win at Burnley on Saturday.

The England right-back recently returned from injury and registered a goal and an assist at Turf Moor before being replaced by Mateo Kovacic in the 70th minute.

"Reece James has a bit of a muscular problem after his last three matches," Tuchel said. "Not in his injured leg, the other leg. We thought he could be on the [training] pitch today but he couldn't so we need further examinations to see what is going on.

"He felt it during the match so that's why we took him out and it didn't get better. It's obvious what he can give to our team, so not good news at the moment."

Tuchel praises team's performances amid owner uncertainty

Tuchel is proud of the manner in which his players have gone about their business amid uncertainty at Stamford Bridge following Roman Abramovich's decision to sell the club.

"To have clarity is always better than to have uncertainty, but I have to say we produced performances and we produced results in times of global uncertainty and also club-wise uncertainties, that makes us proud," he said.

"It shows we can trust in ourselves and gives us a lot of trust in the culture of the club and here at Cobham. At the moment I have absolutely no more information than you have [on the sale], for sure."