Thomas Tuchel, from an inexperienced youth football coach to an author of modern German football tactics, which has been successful in the top European football leagues, is now on the list of the best managers in world football today.
To mention but a few, Tuchel has led some of the world’s biggest football clubs, from Borussia Dortmund to Paris Saint-Germain, where his exploits became known as an emerging force.
Thomas Tuchel teams coached, Trophies, Tactics and his Profile
Tuchel has managed four professional soccer clubs so far, including Mainz 05 and Borussia Dortmund in Germany, Paris Saint-Germain in France and Chelsea FC in England.
Thomas Tuchel Trophies in a nutshell
Borussia Dortmund – Germany
- DFB-Pokal (1 Trophy): 2016–17
Paris Saint-Germain – France
- Ligue 1(2 Titles): 2018–19, 2019–20
- Coupe de France(1 Trophy): 2019–20
- Coupe de la Ligue (1 Trophy): 2019–20
- Trophée des Champions(2 Trophies): 2018, 2019
- UEFA Champions League runner-up: 2019–20
- UEFA Champions League (1Trophy): 2020–21
- UEFA Super Cup(1 Trophy): 2021
- FIFA Club World Cup(Trophy): 2021
- FA Cup runner-up: 2020–21
- EFL Cup runner-up: 2021–22
Lampard had started a new era at Chelsea. Many academy players with a mixed blend of players from top leagues in Europe had been incorporated to form a formidable team. But Tuchel superseded Lampard’s initial achievement which included a Europa League Trophy in 2019.
In May 2021, Thomas Tuchel led the big Blue Chelsea to a Champions League victory against Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City in an encounter that was already favoured to be on the side of the Cityzens amid Chelsea’s form.
With just four months of taking charge of a relatively young and struggling Chelsea team, one wouldn’t think of exploits as great as what Tuchel had achieved with the side. Leading Chelsea to the biggest trophy in European football was a remarkable achievement for the German.
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Carlo Ancelotti: Teams Coached, Trophies, Tactics
In awe of surprise, Tuchel won the Champions League after just four months in charge of Chelsea without conceding a single goal against some of the biggest clubs in European Football en route to the UCL Glory.
Chelsea’s Four Months Timeline vs Big Sides
- Tottenham Hotspur 0-1 Chelsea
- Liverpool FC 0-1 Chelsea
- Chelsea 2-0 Atlético Madrid
- Chelsea 2-0 Real Madrid
- Manchester City 0-1 Chelsea
- Chelsea FC 2-0 Everton FC
When asked about why Tuchel chose Chelsea, his answer was why not?
“Why Chelsea? The Interviewer asked Thomas Tuchel, ” Why not?.
Tuchel’s impressive performance did not go unnoticed as compatriots Jürgen Klopp who’s coached some of the biggest teams in Europe, heaped praises on him.
“He’s an outstanding coach,” said Jürgen Klopp.
Thomas cannot be compared with some of the biggest names in the coaching scene like Carlo Ancelotti, Pep Guardiola or even Jürgen Klopp himself. But he learned a lot and now stands at the top of the rankings alongside these big names.
The Profile – Every Teams Coached
Mainz 05 – The rise to recognition
Dates Joined: 2009–2014
From the youth ranks of FC Augsburg, Tuchel became head coach of Mainz 05 in 2009 following his impressive performance with the youth team.
Praised for his role on the pitch matters, Tuchel was seen as the perfect man for the job. He was incredibly good at making his team force teams to adjust to his style of play, where dispossessing his opponents was the main objective.
In his first game in charge of Mainz 05, he barely had 24 hours to train with his players before kick-off. But at the end of his first season in charge, he led the club to a 9th place finish in the Bundesliga. Although it was more like an experiment, it was successful for Tuchel and his new club, Mainz 05.
In his second season, he took Mainz to a Europa League finish at the end of the campaign in yet another successful season.
Thomas Tuchel’s tactics, the style of play at Mainz 05
Tuchel employs an excellent tactic. He ensures his players avoid the most common long balls syndrome. And to achieve this, he’d cut off the sides (corners) of the pitch to make it look even more like a circular pitch.
According to Tuchel, when players train in tight, about 18 metres wide and 75 metres long with two goals or 30 meters long and 70 metres wide with two goals. Why this method? This gives his players greater freedom whenever they’re playing on a full-sized pitch and become successful against their opponents.
Setting up to counter-attacking opponents is another aspect of his tactics. Why he became successful at Mainz 05 was that he never repeated the same style of play and players twice.
Dates Joined: 2015–2017
Succeeding Klopp at Dortmund would mean greater height for Thomas Tuchel, who was about to implement the Mainz system at the heart of the German football community, “The Yellow Wall”.
Tuchel started by addressing off-field issues such as player contracts and successfully did it. He secured the future of some top players and moved to acquire some prospects for the team.
At the end of the season, things didn’t go as expected by Dortmund’s top hierarchy as Tuchel ramped up the campaign trophyless even though he got to the final of the DFB-Pokal.
But the following season was a milestone for the emerging Dortmund coach. Thomas Tuchel won more points per game and even won the DFB-Pokal after failing in his previous campaign.
In the Bundesliga, he faced an even better side Bayern Munich led by Pep Guardiola, whom he even had an after match meeting with. He has also learnt some from the Spanish manager.
At Borussia Dortmund, Thomas Tuchel helped raise the standard of some of his first-team players, especially in the forward position, where these players had their best in his reign. Players like Marco Reus, Henrik and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are perfect examples.
The Fine Tactics of new Dortmund under Thomas Tuchel
Tuchel successfully transited Borussia Dortmund from Jürgen Klopp Gegenpressing to a more flexible but advanced style of play similar to the same system at Mainz. Flexibility for Tuchel means a player who controls the ball has several options left on the pitch.
Although Tuchel’s position on allowing flexibility instead of heavy metal has its problems, he’s been able to contain and maintain it even against the strongest teams in Europe.
Exit from Dortmund was a massive decision for Borussia Dortmund, who’s about to let go of one of the best coaches in world football. For Tuchel, Dortmund’s exit didn’t affect him much as it didn’t take too long before French giants Paris Saint-Germain came calling for his services.
During his two-year reign at the Signal Iduna Park, Tuchel brought in new horizons from on and off the pitch. He brought in a unique style of training and tactics and raised the standard of some first-team players who had also gone for some of the biggest football clubs in Europe.
The 2016–17 DFB-Pokal final victory was Thomas Tuchel’s only trophy in his two-year reign at Borussia Dortmund.
Paris Saint-Germain Football Club
Dates Joined: 2018–2020
In May 2018, Paris Saint-Germain agreed on a two-year contract with Thomas Tuchel following the collapsed project with Spanish coach Unai Emery. Emery was appointed following his success with Sevilla in the UEFA Europa League.
“Thank you all for coming to my presentation. I’m very happy to be the coach of this incredible club”. These were the words of Thomas Tuchel during his presentation as Paris Saint-Germain’s new manager in 2018.
Paris Saint-Germain was arguably Thomas’s most significant task. He had to handle a massive collection of world-class players like Kylian Mbappé, Edinson Cavani, and Neymar Jr. The superstars were overwhelming. Still, the German proved to be the right person for the job.
Paris Saint-Germain’s hierarchy, with an eye for the UEFA Champions League, had spent heavily on the market in search of players to do jobs for them. But these players would require a tactically sound and gifted manager.
Tuchel, who has been successful at Mainz and Borussia Dortmund, was the best option.
Winning the first Fourteen games in a row with Paris Saint-Germain in the French Ligue 1 was a French and personal record for Thomas, who now has a new task.
A sign of his wealth of experience and level as a top-class manager, Tuchel won the Trophée des Champions, leading his side to a humiliating 4-0 win over AS Monaco on 4 August 2018.
The domestic scene seemed to be a fortress for Tuchel. He successfully won and defended the French Ligue 1 in 2018–19 and 2019–20. He also won a French Cup, French League Cup and two Trophée des Champions. He also had a ratio of winning three of every four-game.
Ultimately, what Paris Saint-Germain’s top hierarchy had wanted was the UEFA Champions League, which they’d tried in the past and had failed amid a high budget for the market.
Although Tuchel was successful with the club in the domestic scene, the Champions League was a bit harder. In his outing, his team crashed out in the Round of 16 following their 1-3 loss at home to Manchester United despite leading the first leg 2-0.
With an away rule still in play at the time, Paris Saint-Germain were sent parking, leaving Thomas to try again next time. His second Champions League outing became the club’s best since the rebrand to the UCL in 1992.
PSG was runner-up in the 2019–20 final against Bayern Munich.
Neymar was the first PSG in the 18th minute that came close enough to hit the target but was stopped by Neuer’s outstretched leg foiled by the Brazilian.
Mbappe, Ander Herrera, and Angel Di Maria also came close to restoring parity in the game.
Chelsea Football Club
Dates Joined: 2021- present
Tuchel joined Chelsea in midseason, replacing club legend Frank Lampard. He was an improvement on his predecessor.
The German manager equalled his 14 matches unbeaten streak at Paris Saint-Germain with Chelsea, becoming the first new manager to do so at the club. At the end of his first season, he led the club to UEFA Champions League glory with a 1–0 win over Manchester City in the final.
Chelsea FC has one of the strongest squad in the EPL. Tuchel’s flexibility and consistency are amongst the top three best Premier League teams this season.
Although Paris Saint-Germain mission was successful, Chelsea would even offer countless opportunities for Tuchel to become more successful than ever.
And he was meeting the old foes yet again, the masters and the friends. Tuchel would be meeting Pep Guardiola, whom he faced at Bayern Munich and Jürgen Klopp, whom he succeeded at Borussia Dortmund and replaced his heavy metal with his flexible style.
“I saw already some routines, some fundamental process, which I remember when I faced him in Borussia Dortmund.” Pep Guardiola.
“Will be tricky to face him because it always was tricky. Because he’s a good one.” – Jürgen Klopp.
The reason for Thomas Tuchel’s success at Chelsea has been written. He is a good coach, and everyone knows about that. However, what powers him is his hunger for success at all times. And it could be safe to say he’s not satisfied until the job is done.
“I don’t want to rest. I want the next one—the next success. And I want the next title’. And I want the following process on the same level of quality of consistency. And I want to be a part of it. And I demand to be part of it.” – Thomas Tuchel.