Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel gives special mention to secret weapon behind the scenes

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Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has acknowledged Anthony Barry, a member of his backroom staff, for improving the club’s set-pieces during his time at the club. Barry has been revealed as a secret weapon for the Blues, given their impressive set-piece numbers since his arrival.

In the summer of 2020, he left Wigan Athletic after three years of assisting Paul Cook to join Frank Lampard at Chelsea.

After Lampard’s sacking, Tuchel kept Barry around and reaped the rewards from dead-ball situations.

Since the start of last season, Chelsea have found the net from 17 set-pieces in the Premier League and have also conceded from few.

And Barry received a special mention from current boss Tuchel for his outstanding work earlier this week.

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Ahead of Chelsea’s Carabao Cup fourth-round win over Southampton, Tuchel lauded Barry for helping the team score in ‘important’ situations.

In the official matchday programme, he credited Barry for Andreas Christensen’s first-ever Chelsea goal in the recent 4-0 win over Malmo.

He wrote: “It’s a good sign when Andreas [Christensen] starts to score – I think our set-piece coach, Anthony Barry, can be very, very proud.

“It’s important to score in situations like this and have lots of people to score.”

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Speaking in January, Lampard heaped praise on Barry for his positive impact on the Chelsea squad.

“He’s been a real positive for the group dynamic, and in all senses,” Lampard explained.

“He’s certainly helped on set-pieces, but he’s very diligent. He pays so much attention to ourselves and the opposition in every part of the game, from what we do in the office to studying opposition and working on the training field.

“It’s very important you have balance within staff, and what Anthony [Barry] has given us is another person and another level of expertise that I can call upon, and a work ethic that is outstanding.”

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Barry’s apparent expertise is bound to be effective in what is expected to be one of the closest title races in recent history.

Chelsea, the European champions, are vying to reclaim the top-flight title, but current holders Manchester City and Liverpool will compete.

If the Blues can continue their impressive numbers from attacking and defending dead-ball situations, it could be advantageous.

At the top of the tree on 22 points after nine games, Tuchel’s men have made a great start.

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