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Under-fire Graham Potter could survive 2022-23 season

24 Feb 2023
Moti Prakash 24 Feb 2023
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  • Graham Potter is under pressure at Chelsea
  • Will the Blues boss remain in his job at Stamford Bridge?
  • Reports suggest he will survive the season
graham potter
Graham Potter is under pressure (Getty Images)

Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly and the other members of the board are still backing under-fire manager Graham Potter, according to reports. Will Potter survive the 2022/23 season?

Potter, who was appointed Chelsea's head coach after the Blues made a poor start to the 2022-23 season under Thomas Tuchel, has won just two of his last 14 games in charge.

After losing to struggling Southampton last weekend, Chelsea is currently languishing in 10th place on the Premier League table and Potter remains one of the favourites to lose his job in the next manager betting markets.

Tuchel was an extremely popular figure among the Chelsea fanbase – the German won a Champions League title with the Blues in the 2020-21 season despite joining the club mid-season. 

Under Tuchel, Chelsea became an excellent cup side and one of the hardest teams to break down in European football. 

Tuchel’s 19-month tenure wasn’t without difficulties, but he formed a great relationship with the fanbase after managing the team through an ownership transition. 

When Boehly fired Tuchel, the primary reasons cited by reporters were a difference in opinion concerning recruitment and the need for a long-term manager. 

Tuchel has a history of falling out with board members, and it seems like it didn’t take long for him to do the same with Boehly. 

Like Tuchel, Potter is considered one of the brightest tacticians in the game, but they couldn’t be more different as personalities. 

Potter’s mild disposition endeared him to most Premier League fans when he was head coach at Brighton Hove & Albion, but it has become a stick to beat him with since taking over Chelsea. 

Former owner Roman Abramovich’s tenure was often associated with boisterous personalities like Tuchel, Jose Mourinho, and Antonio Conte. 

Still, the club succeeded under calmer characters like Carlo Ancelloti, Robert Di Matteo, and Maurizio Sarri. There’s no reason why this can’t apply to Boehly and Potter. 

Boehly inherited one of the best coaches in the world but sacked him anyway. He’s not afraid to make big decisions – he has also added a lot of players to the squad, albeit haphazardly. He has to take some responsibility here. 

Potter’s situation can be compared to Mikel Arteta’s at Arsenal. Arteta, like Potter, joined a big club with outstanding coaching credentials, but it takes a while to build a team, and he was afforded that time despite all the noise.

Boehly could look at the market, but it won’t get any easier. Top coaches like Luis Enrique and Mauricio Pochettino are out of a job, but Boehly will face similar issues. Pochettino’s a club-builder like Potter, and Enrique can throw the odd tantrum like Tuchel. 

Boehly has also hired recruitment staff to suit the style of football that Graham Potter employs. He has committed quite a lot to Potter already. 

Chelsea faces local rivals Tottenham Hotspur on the weekend – a loss could lead to a highly toxic atmosphere. Potter looks safe for now, but the outcome of these games can lead to new realities – it might become untenable. 

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