Thomas Tuchel has questioned how Antonio Conte escaped a touchline ban after the two managers’ red cards in Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Tottenham.
Tuchel’s appeal against a one-match touchline ban – he was also fined £35,000 – was dismissed on Friday, with the appeal board’s written reasons criticising him for a “worrying lack of insight” in attempting to lay a greater share of blame with Conte. Tuchel will not be in the dugout for Chelsea’s Premier League game at home to Leicester on Saturday.
Conte punishment was a £15,000 fine, leaving Tuchel quizzical over the disparity. A Football Association’s independent regulatory commission found Tuchel’s full-time extended handshake with Conte was “highly provocative” and that Tuchel was “largely culpable” for the clash, but the Chelsea manager had other views.
“I think there are two sides to it,” he said. “The one side is that I got a red card and I behaved in a way that is not appropriate and I regret. But it was out of passion and I don’t think it was aggressive. But I can accept if I get a red card that there is a touchline ban.
“What is hard to accept is the context, that I don’t think I started the aggression, and that it started earlier. And we both got a red card. And for a firm handshake at the end of the match one coach is banned, this is very hard to accept – but I have to accept it.
“In future, you will just a hear a no comment from me on referees. No matter how big it is this is obviously what they want.”
Tuchel continues to wait for the outcome from another FA disciplinary charge, of bringing the game into disrepute for his comments on the referee, Anthony Taylor. Tuchel said “maybe it would be better” if Taylor did not referee Chelsea again.
Conte said on Friday the time to judge Tottenham would be during the upcoming busy period where the club will play once every three days. Spurs have started the season with seven points from a possible nine but now embark on a two-and-a-half-month schedule where they will play 20 matches across domestic and European competitions. “This is the period where you understand which team and which squad are really good to be competitive,” Conte said.