“I am delighted with Kai with everything I wanted the night to be with him. I said it in the last two games that Kai has had no pre-season and in signing for the club, I think it took a few days out as well. We had to play him because we have had a few injuries and tonight was as great exercise and another game for him to see how we work off the ball, to be part of that.
“He makes the recovery tackle for Ross’s goal, but then to also just have some freedom on the ball in central areas roaming behind Tammy. The combinations he had with Tammy, the way he grew into the game and had confidence and the three goals. It was a great night for Kai and the first of many for him.”
Tammy Abraham and Giroud both scored. Happy to have options?
“Yes, it is a good problem. I was delighted for both strikers today. Tammy’s work rate and quality, his goal and assist was brilliant. For him, he hasn’t had many games in this period, pre-season wise, so it is good for him to get those minutes under his belt. Oli, similar in terms of impact when he came on.
“He could have had a couple of assists and had the goal. Then we have seen Timo in the two other games. So it gives me three strikers with different attributes to each other, all competitive in a good way. It is different options from last year for sure with me.”
What did you make of Thiago Silva’s debut?
“Yes, it is exciting for us because he has had just over a week training with us. It was a perfect 60 minutes for him tonight. He will show the qualities he has. Of course, he will get fitter and better. He also gave us something for me on the night in the dressing room and on the pitch of a leader with authority in terms of his demands on others.
“He can’t speak the language but at the minute that’s not even a problem because his presence and the way he commands people around him is already showing that to me in training and in our game tonight. Yes, I am very very pleased with Thiago. It is what I expected of a player of his level but it is very refreshing to have him here at the club.”
A good night to tick off all the boxes you needed?
“It was a very good night in those terms because my concerns were before the game that I wanted it to be a training exercise. I wasn’t disrespecting the game because I knew it would be a tough game. Barnsley are very good and we want to do well in this competition. But the phase we are in now I wanted to see how good we could be off the ball, last we were fantastic in large parts of the season in winning the ball back and having high pressure.
“We haven’t found that just yet because of fitness and with the new shape of the team. Today we started to see elements of that back in our game. Then I had a big concern about how we were on the ball because we haven’t been so smooth as we can be in the first two games for different reasons. We saw elements of that in the game. And then all the individuals and the minutes and the fitness and the combinations of the team started to show tonight. So it became a very positive night in the end.”
Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Antonio Rudiger not in the squad, why was that?
“The situation with both is that they weren’t in the squad. I had a similar answer from the other day, they just weren’t in the squad. That is just a choice at the moment.
“Again with the centre-halves I can’t have them all in the squad. I keep getting asked about the size of the squad. There might be movement, we know that, but nothing is concrete so don’t read too much into those selections at the minute. It will have to be things which are right for the club and individuals and me and in terms of what happens in the next couple of weeks.”
Edouard Mendy, medical done?
“The medical I think is done and complete. I want to be a bit careful with that. I don’t want to give absolute confirmation, but possibly over the next 24 hours. It seems like one which is done.”
Callum Hudson-Odoi, what did you think of his performance?
“I think he did well. Not easy with not so many minutes, he is the same as some others in the same boat at the moment. I thought at parts he looked fresh and sharp. We talk about work ethic, which he showed really well in terms of getting the ball back for us, recovery runs, all the things which must be absolutely standard in his game. If you look at the top wingers in the Premier League and how they play. He showed loads of great moments. I was really pleased with Callum, I thought he had a good night.”