Graham Potter pledged to develop a team Chelsea’s fans can be proud of after succeeding Thomas Tuchel as the Blues’ head coach on Thursday.
Chairman Todd Boehly made the decision to part company with Tuchel amid an underwhelming start to the new campaign on Wednesday, and has turned to Potter in his search for a replacement.
After leading Brighton and Hove Albion to 13 points from their first six games of the Premier League campaign, Potter has signed a five-year contract at Stamford Bridge
Speaking to the club’s website upon his appointment, Potter expressed his excitement at the making the step up while also thanking his former employers.
“I am incredibly proud and excited to represent Chelsea FC, this fantastic football club,” he said.
“I am very excited to partner with Chelsea’s new ownership group and look forward to meeting and working with the exciting group of players and to develop a team and culture that our amazing fans can be proud of.
Chelsea Football Club is delighted to welcome Graham Potter as our new Head Coach!
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) September 8, 2022
“I would also like to place my sincere thanks to Brighton and Hove Albion for allowing me this opportunity and in particular Tony Bloom and all the players, staff and supporters for their continued support during my time at the club.”
Brighton expressed their gratitude for Potter’s efforts in a statement of their own, with chairman Bloom saying: “I am very disappointed that Graham will be leaving us.
“He has done exceptionally well over the past three-and-a-bit seasons, he is an exceptional head coach and an exceptional person. He will be hugely missed at our football club.
“He leaves an excellent legacy for his successor with the club in its highest ever position, and on the back of leading us to our highest finish in the club’s history last season.”
Having overseen Ostersunds’ rise from the fourth tier of Swedish football to European qualification in his first coaching role, Potter impressed by leading Championship outfit Swansea City to the FA Cup quarter-finals in a single season in Wales in 2018-19.
Having been appointed as Brighton’s head coach in 2019, Potter transformed the Seagulls’ style of play and led them to a ninth-placed Premier League finish last term.
Only Manchester City and Liverpool won possession in the final third more often than Brighton among Premier League clubs last season, while only the division’s top three (City, Liverpool and Chelsea) recorded fewer than their 11 defeats.
Potter inherits a Chelsea side which was strengthened significantly in the recent transfer window, with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Kalidou Koulibaly, Marc Cucurella, Wesley Fofana and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang among their high-profile additions.
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