Mason Mount has given Chelsea a scare after suffering a back injury ahead of their Champions League semi-final second leg against Real Madrid.
The midfielder was in visible discomfort when substituted late on in the 2-0 win against Fulham on Saturday.
Chelsea will assess the extent of the damage and are waiting to see how he reacts to it after rest – but it is a worry for Tuchel as he prepares for Wednesday’s clash.
The Chelsea manager said: “I hope really that Mason is not a big thing and hopefully he can fully recover for Real Madrid.”
He added: “It was my decision, there was not any doctor or physio who told me to take him off.
“But I saw him landing hard and it was the moment anyway when we wanted to take him off anyway.
“I saw him holding his back slightly, so we didn’t want to take any risks but I have no other information on that. He has the full package, mentally, in terms of talent and physically.
“And the most important part is his character, he has his feet on the ground and he’s a nice guy. He comes to Cobham every day to learn something new and have new experiences.
“He is the guy who can recover very fast, he’s a very physical player and is fully adapted to PL football. He has big self-confidence in a very, very positive way.
“It’s a pleasure to have him, be at his side and guide him and support him. It’s impressive, he’s not affected by all the praise.
“This is maybe the most important part. He seems to be a guy who likes the sport, and feels an obligation to make the most out of it. And he wants it absolutely badly, so it’s a top mix.”
Better news for Chelsea was the performance of Kai Havertz, who strengthened his case to start against Real with both goals against Fulham.
Tuchel added: “This is what we want if someone gets his chance. He scored two decisive goals and he was involved along with Timo Werner – two very good performances from our strikers how it should be.
“We knew Fulham gives everyone a hard time. They make you under-perform and they make you suffer. You cannot get confused with the table.
“That’s why I have the highest respect for what we did today. It was tough for us, but we hang in the game. We could decide the match earlier, but it was a tough and a very important win.
‘I hope that Mason Mount will be back for Real Madrid and his injury won’t be serious.’
— Chelsea Exeter TV (@ChelseaExeterTV) May 1, 2021
“We were spot on. It was what we demanded from ourselves. We showed the pride we are capable of – to do it in between two big games. I’m beyond happy that we did it.
“There was no lack of concentration. We had some trouble which everyone against this Fulham side has but there was no lack of concentration and that was key.”