Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel insists his side were not at their best as they beat Tottenham 1-0 in the second leg of their Carabao Cup semi-final.
The Blues won the tie 3-0 on aggregate after they comfortably beat their London rivals 2-0 at Stamford Bridge last week.
Antonio Rudiger scored the only goal of the game on Wednesday evening as Spurs had a Harry Kane goal disallowed for offside. They also had two penalties overturned by VAR.
Man Utd faring well – above Chelsea – in European form table…
Tuchel, speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, said: “We’re happy with the result. In the first half we were the better team and we deserved to be up.”
The German was not happy with the end of the second leg, however, insisting his side “lost concentration”.
He added: “But we lost concentration and lost focus in the last 15 minutes of the first half and again in the second half. We were almost punished for lack of focus.
“We played at 90% and that’s not our style – we shouldn’t do this. We had to work hard and it was not our best performance – we were better in the first leg.”
Tuchel’s thoughts were seconded by goalscorer Rudiger, who told Sky Sports: “In the second half, like today, they came back a bit. Today they were a bit more dangerous but it was because of our lack of focus, I would say.”
Chelsea face league leaders Manchester City on Saturday. The Blues are currently ten points behind Pep Guardiola’s men, who are heavy favourites to retain their Premier League crown.
On the City clash, Rudiger said: “There are a lot of tough games to play. The schedule is getting busier and busier. We have to be up for it.”
Elsewhere, Neil Warnock is of the belief that three Middlesbrough defenders are “better than Manchester United’s defence”.
“They’ve got great individuals but not a team,” he told talkSPORT.
“They’ve got my old team Middlesbrough in the next round of the FA Cup and I wouldn’t swap any of their defenders for the back three at Middlesbrough – Dael Fry, Anfernee Dijksteele and Paddy McNair.
“I think they’re better than Man United‘s defence.”