I deserve criticism if Dortmund's players do - Tuchel

By Ryan Benson 2 December 2016 339
I deserve criticism if Dortmund's players do - Tuchel

Thomas Tuchel believes any criticism of Borussia Dortmund should be directed at him after their 2-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt last time out.

Dortmund went into the trip to Frankfurt on the back of a run of four successive wins across all competitions, a streak during which they scored 15 goals.

Victory would have left them fourth in the table, but Haris Seferovic's late winner ultimately saw them drop to seventh and Tuchel was scathing of his team after the match, questioning his players' desire and claiming there were "technical flaws, tactical flaws and mental flaws".

Tuchel received criticism, but for his post-match comments as opposed to Dortmund's performance, which he believes would have been fairer to everyone involved.

"I like my team, I know how much potential they have," he said ahead of Saturday's visit of Borussia Monchengladbach.

"I was frustrated because we won the four games before the Frankfurt match with so much passion. Those four games were all very similar, not perfect, but ascending in the right direction. 

"When we went to Frankfurt we thought we could take big step forward, but then I saw so little of that [passion], so this reaction I was annoyed about, but then I'm also annoyed at myself.

"When I say 'we', I also include myself in the criticism. But I have seen a significant response. The training week was outstandingly good. 

"Many players are now back, we had great competition, high intensity. We feel ready."

It has not been a straightforward season for Dortmund so far, with Tuchel's side suffering with an extensive number of injuries right from the start, and as a result some players have been forced into bigger roles than that which the coach felt they were ready for.

"I see the positive characteristics in my players," he added. "We had many summer transfers, we have lowered the average age dramatically, then the many casualties came.

"We will have to acknowledge that we are in a process, even when the wounded come back.

"We have a lot of setbacks. When [Marco] Reus comes back, [Raphael] Guerreiro gets injured. Guerreiro is probably the only player we can hardly replace.

"Ousmane Dembele plays a much more important than we had planned. I wish he could develop in Reus' slip stream.

"But Dembele has already exceeded our expectations, though he still has to get used to the frequency of games."

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Ryan Benson