Three wins from 10 Premier League games proved terminal for Frank Lampard at Chelsea this time last year, and the run Thomas Tuchel is enduring is little better.
Tuchel’s team have also won just three in 10. They have 14 points to Lampard’s 11, although that hasn’t been enough to stop Manchester City disappearing out of sight and concern will deepen if they fail to beat Antonio Conte’s Tottenham tomorrow.
Chelsea will not play again in the league for nearly a month, and owner Roman Abramovich must be acutely aware they could be engulfed by the chasing pack when they return from the Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi.
Thomas Tuchel is enduring a rotten run of results at Chelsea - but his job is safe for now
Frank Lampard was sacked by Chelsea after posting the same poor run of results last year
Even so, as Tuchel nears one year in the job, there is no one agitating for change at Stamford Bridge. Anxiety has not gripped as it sometimes can and Abramovich is not loading the bullets.
At least not yet, and that is testament to Tuchel’s first 12 months in charge. Winning the Champions League helped, of course. As did the Super Cup, little more than an exhibition game on these shores but a glitzy prize to command the international prestige modern owners like.
Lead Chelsea to their first world title and there’s another feather in the Tuchel cap, with a Carabao Cup final to follow against Liverpool and the FA Cup still in play.
It could be another glittering season, although form must improve to protect the club’s Champions League status. Once that goes, the landscape can change very quickly.
Lampard’s tenure reached its critical stage when Chelsea crashed rapidly from the top of the Premier League to ninth, by which point no mitigating factors could save him. Tuchel’s reaction, when first approached, was to question whether Chelsea really needed to oust a club legend who had performed well and nurtured the academy graduates in the midst of a transfer ban.
But minds were already made up at board level. Not only were results tanking, but key relationships were damaged. Arguably as important as his Champions League triumph has been Tuchel’s ability to nourish lines of communication with director Marina Granovskaia and technical and performance adviser Petr Cech.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and other key figures have been delighted with Tuchel
Abramovich’s Chelsea might be a peculiar