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01st Mar 2022

Thomas Tuchel demands journalists stop asking him about Ukraine

Callum Boyle

‘I’m not a politician’

Thomas Tuchel lost his cool during his press conference on Tuesday and demanded journalist to stop asking questions about the ongoing war in Ukraine.

The Chelsea boss faced the press ahead of his side’s FA Cup fifth round tie away to Luton Town on Wednesday, however the game is overshadowed by the events in the East of Europe.

Chelsea in particular have come under the spotlight in recent days given club owner, Roman Abramovich’s, strong links to Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Last weekend, Abramovich and Chelsea released a statement announcing that the Russian billionaire oligarch would be handing over the “stewardship and care” to the trustees of the club.

Tuchel was asked if Abramovich’s ownership of the club was a problem given the ongoing situation in Ukraine. He admitted it was hard to give an answer as he doesn’t know the full context.

He said: “I have to say that’s a bit too much for me to answer. I’m not aware of any details, and I’m not aware of the whole situation.

“We all agree there are situations much, much more important than football, this will never change. And situations like war are of course so much more important.

“But the role of Mr. Abramovich is not on me to comment, because I simply don’t know enough about it.”

The Chelsea boss then reiterated that people at the club are trying to remain calm and focus on football as much as possible – but are aware of the severity of the ongoing situation in Ukraine.

” I think we have a right to focus on sports,” he added.

“The players have a right to be focused and this is what we can tell the fans. I think this is what the fans saw on Sunday.

“There is a big situation out there and there was a big commitment still from the players, clubs and fans. I think everyone is aware of more important things and the situation in Ukraine is by far more important.

“We still arrived with two strong teams to play a fantastic match. We arrived still to entertain the fans with a match of maximum effort and entertainment. I don’t know what we could do differently.”

But when pressed for a third time to give his opinion on the war in Ukraine, the German snapped back and insisted that he didn’t want to answer any more questions and could only repeat his previous thoughts.

“Listen, listen, listen you have to stop, I’m not a politician,” he said.

“You have to stop, honestly, I can only repeat it and I feel bad to repeat it because I’ve never experienced war.

“So even to talk about it I feel bad because I’m very privileged – I sit here in peace. I do the best I can but you have to stop asking me these questions because I have no answers for you.”

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