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The winger turned down a spot on Lee Carsley’s youth team, a choice his manager is unsure of
Callum Hudson-Odoi must be ready to “deal with the consequences” of his choice to refuse to be called up to the English U-21 squad, says Thomas Tuchel, and the Chelsea manager adds that he does not want to see the player leave on loan .
The winger, who has been a full-time England international since 2019, was denied a place in Lee Carsley’s youth team after being surpassed by Gareth Southgate until September in Qatar’s 2022 World Cup qualifiers at a high level.
Tuchel says the decision is the 20-year-old to be made, but has admitted minutes of the young lions would likely have helped him as he continues to fight for his place at Stamford Bridge.
What has been said?
“It’s his decision and nothing to do with my opinion or the club’s,” the German said ahead of his team’s Premier League clash with Liverpool at the weekend.
“If I wonder a little, I think it’s about disappointment that he is not nominated for the first team, but at the same time he may not have had enough minutes to be nominated for the first team.
“I could see the upgrade in having a few minutes and being in a leading role for the U-21s, but he decided differently so he will deal with the consequences.”
Tuchel throws glove to winger
After signing a five-year deal in September 2019, Hudson-Odoi has struggled to make its way to the Blues’ first team since and has found itself considering options further afield this summer.
Tuchel says no move has taken place so far, while admitting there may still be time before the transfer window closes – but also challenges the youngster to prove himself at Stamford Bridge.
“There is always room for improvement here in training,” he added. “It is difficult to argue that he needs regular playing time to improve his level.
“At the same time, it’s not just about letting players go. If we want to compete in all competitions, it’s also about numbers.
“I have the feeling that Callum decided to fight for his place here. He had a very good pre-season. The door is always open to sneak through. Currently there is no loan. ”
The bigger picture
If Hudson-Odoi really stays with the Blues, he could be in line for his first Premier League start of the season when they face Liverpool at the weekend.
After delivering two wins from two so far in this period, Tuchel’s side – reinforced by Romelu Lukaku’s return – is among the early frontrunners of this period.
They will probably face their toughest test yet, however, in the form of Jurgen Klopp’s Reds seeking to regain the top crown they were set aside by last season of Manchester City.