Crystal drop

Thomas Tuchel not happy to see rivals dropping points as Chelsea extend their lead

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has insisted he takes no joy in seeing his Premier League title rivals drop points after their managers claim a 3-0 win at Newcastle without a manager

Tuchel’s side recorded a fourth consecutive league victory to extend their lead at the top as Liverpool were held by Brighton and Manchester City slipped to a shock home loss to Crystal Palace.

Chelsea have taken three points ahead of Liverpool and five ahead of City after Reece James’ brace in the second half and Jorginho’s late-in-game penalty brought their league unbeaten track on the road this season to five matches.

Tuchel said: “There has never been a time when we celebrate the results on the other fields.

“First of all, it’s way too early and second, we want to focus on ourselves rather than on others. What goes around comes back, we don’t do that.

“There is a long way to go. I am absolutely happy today with our performance off the ball. It was the key for me from the first to the last minute, the effort and the discipline.

James broke the deadlock in the 65th minute when he hit the ball from a tight angle, then slammed a rebound after substitute Callum Hudson-Odoi’s shot was blocked by Ciaran Clark.

Reece James (second from left) celebrated with his Chelsea teammates (Owen Humphreys / PA)

(PA wire)

Jorginho sealed the penalty points after Newcastle goalkeeper Karl Darlow moved to Kai Havertz.

Tuchel added, “It’s a complex game and Reece can’t score if Callum doesn’t dribble and Callum can’t dribble if Chilly (Ben Chilwell) doesn’t open up the space.

“Our attackers sometimes sacrifice themselves to create opportunities and spaces for others.

“We certainly don’t need to practice shooting because Reece shoots like a horse.”

This was not how interim Newcastle boss Graeme Jones wanted to hand over the reins, with the club expected to appoint a permanent replacement for Steve Bruce ahead of next week’s trip to Brighton.

Jones’ tenure from the club’s new owners after Bruce left had been to take charge of two matches and he said he didn’t know what would happen next.

“I really don’t know,” he said. “I did the matches, spoke to the players after the match and came straight to the press conference.

“I no longer spoke to the owners. We’ll see what they have to say tonight or tomorrow.

Newcastle tied their longest winless streak at the start of a top-level 10-game season, which took place in 1898 and 2018.

“We are in a relegation battle, there is no doubt about it and we have to face it like men,” added Jones, who said the team were good enough to stand.

“But the truth is, I think he needs a new face.

“The fans were amazing today. They stayed with the team through the tough times.

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