Sunday, June 16News That Matters

Chelsea reach decision on sacking Graham Potter after Man City loss

Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly will not axe Graham Potter even if he fails to deliver a top-four finish at the club, according to reports.

The Chelsea manager, who was appointed in September, is facing a tough period in west London, which was only worsened by Thursday defeat by Manchester City.

The 1-0 loss to Pep Guardiola’s side leaves the Blues languishing in tenth – 10 points outside the top four with Brentford and Fulham above them.

Potter made the step up to the club after his impressive work at Brighton, but is still looking to get a tune out of his team.

Boehly took a long-term view after sacking Thomas Tuchel, handing Potter a five-year contract worth £50m. He believes the Englishman can create a winning team by developing the players he has, coupled with financial investment, and will not sack him even if they finish outside the top four.

The American’s approach is in stark contrast to that of Roman Abramovich, who employed 14 managers during his two-decade-long ownership. He took a short-term approach with his appointments, which proved a successful strategy but resulted in few lengthy managerial stays.

Potter is out to prove himself at a big club, with his only two jobs in the United Kingdom coming at Swansea and Brighton. He has a team built by Tuchel, which had over £200m spent in the summer.

The Chelsea boss sees positives despite his side’s poor run of form. They lost to City, who got a second-half winner through Riyad Mahrez. And before that, the Blues had hit the post and Potter was impressed with their display against the champions.

He said: “The lads gave everything, it was spirited and we had some opportunities against a top team. I liked what we tried to do against a top side. We were competitive and had spirit on the pitch, courage in attack and took responsibility at the back. Apart from the result, as we hate to lose, I’m proud of the players.”

He said: “You have to take responsibility when we’re not playing well but, at the same time, you hope people look at the whole context in terms of what we’ve had to deal with. Emotions are high.

“We’ll try to ride out the storm and I think the crowd appreciated the performance and were behind the team tonight. Our supporters were fantastic and got behind the team in a great way.”


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