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“Literally within minutes”- Brighton CEO recounts Chelsea call for Graham Potter after Thomas Tuchel sacking

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Chelsea boss Graham Potter plots to balance work and rest ahead of World Cup break.

Club News: Paul Barber recalls Chelsea call for Graham Potter after Thomas Tuchel sacking

Brighton & Hove Albion CEO Paul Barber has recalled the call he received from Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly for manager Graham Potter after Thomas Tuchel was sacked.

Tuchel, who was appointed as the Blues head coach in 2021, won the Champions League with the west London club in his debut season. A year and a half later, the German was surprisingly sacked on September 7.

Less than 48 hours after the sacking, the Blues announced Potter as the head coach of the club. Now speaking on Albion Roar podcast (h/t Sussex Live), Brighton CEO Barber has recalled the phone call he received from Boehly.

“What we didn’t expect to happen, obviously, was for Chelsea’s new owners to decide Thomas Tuchel wasn’t for them and to suddenly be a gap there. When that happened, literally within minutes of Tuchel being told, Todd Boehly called me and asked about Graham.

Former Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel.
Former Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel.

“I guess I was probably the first to know outside of Chelsea that Tuchel had been dismissed and it was certainly before it was public knowledge.”

Potter got off to a really good start with his new club. The Blues went nine games undefeated in all competitions, winning six of them in the process.

However, things have gone downhill after the 4-1 loss against Brighton last month. Since then, the west London club have lost three games on the trout in all competitions, with the last being a 1-0 defeat against Newcastle United.

Chelsea boss Graham Potter will have to work his magic to change the Blues course for the second half of the season. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)
Chelsea boss Graham Potter will have to work his magic to change the Blues course for the second half of the season. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

Injuries played their part in such a poor run. First-team players like Reece James, Wesley Fofana and N’Golo Kante had to be sidelined for long periods, with the manager yet to field Kante since his appointment.

The World Cup break could not have come at a better time. Chelsea are currently eighth on the table with 21 points, 16 behind leaders Arsenal. It will take some magic for Potter to change the course of the club in the second half of the season.

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Winning the league currently is looking highly unlikely. But Potter has the chance to deliver the FA Cup and Champions League. Whether he can guide the club to silverware this season remains to be seen.

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