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Thomas Tuchel has spoken out for the first time since his Chelsea sacking after releasing a emotional statement on social media.
The German manager, who was brutally dismissed on Wednesday following the Blues' 1-0 defeat to Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League, said he was "devastated" to his lose his job and that he considered Chelsea his "home".
He went on to thank the players, staff and supporters for making him feel "very welcome from the start" before insisting that the club will "always have a special place in my heart".
READ MORE: Chelsea players were informed of Thomas Tuchel sacking by text message
"This is the one of the most difficult statements I have ever had to write – and it is one I hoped I would not need to do for many years," Tuchel began.
"I am devastated that my time at Chelsea has come to an end. This is a club where I felt at home, both professionally and personally. Thank you so much to all the staff, the players and the supporters for making me feel very welcome from the start.
"The pride and joy I felt at helping the team to win the Champions League and the Club World Cup will stay with me forever. I am honoured to have been a part of the this club's history and the memories of the last 19 months will always have a special place in my heart."
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Despite the fact Chelsea had only won three of their first seven matches in all competitions this season, Tuchel's dismissal came as a complete shock.
It had only been 16 months since he guided the Blues to an unlikely Champions League triumph, and considering all the upheaval at the club, both on and off the field, over the past year or so, fans and pundits expected Tuchel to be given more time to right the ship.
Chelsea owner Todd Boehly had also just splashed £273m on new signings over the summer, many of whom were bought on Tuchel's recommendation, though that didn't stop the American from swinging the axe.
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- Chelsea FC
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- Thomas Tuchel
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