Graham Potter sacked: Julian Nagelsmann 50/50 on move to take Chelsea job which proved too big for Potter

Graham Potter sacked: Julian Nagelsmann 50/50 on move to take Chelsea job which proved too big for Potter post thumbnail image

Chelsea have sacked Graham Potter as head coach; Potter’s departure follows the Blues’ 2-0 loss at home to Aston Villa, which saw them slip into the bottom half of the Premier League table.

Sky Sports News chief reporter Kaveh Solhekol says former Bayern Munich head coach Julian Nagelsmann is the frontrunner to become the new Chelsea manager after Graham Potter was sacked on Sunday night.

Potter’s departure follows the Blues’ 2-0 loss at home to Aston Villa, which saw them slip into the bottom half of the Premier League table. Sky Germany claim it is 50:50 as to whether Nagelsmann would be prepared to move quickly.

Bruno Saltor will take charge as interim head coach, with Chelsea set to host Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday night live on Sky Sports before travelling to Wolves next weekend. Sky Sports News understands Potter’s number two Billy Reid has also left the club.

Assistant coach Bjorn Hamberg and goalkeeper coach Ben Roberts will remain and assist Bruno.

“Chelsea FC has announced that Graham Potter has departed the club. Graham has agreed to collaborate with the club to facilitate a smooth transition.

“In his time with the club, Graham has taken us to the quarter-final of the Champions League, where we will face Real Madrid. Chelsea would like to thank Graham for all his efforts and contribution and wish him well for the future.”

A club statement read.

Potter, who left Brighton for Chelsea in September, had repeatedly stated that despite the club’s struggles he felt he had the full support of the owners at Stamford Bridge. Sky Sports News chief reporter Kaveh Solhekol looks at where it went wrong for Potter and why the club have moved now to replace him.

Chelsea will have been doing their homework in the background, trying to set up a replacement. At the moment, we don’t know who that person will be. What we do know is that they want Julian Nagelsmann and and he is available at the moment.

The latest information we have coming out from Sky Germany is that they’re not convinced that he’s going to want to move from Germany and take another job straightaway. Maybe he’s going to want to wait until the summer to give him a little bit of a chance to recharge his batteries after leaving Bayern Munich.

Other jobs could become available in the summer as well, like the Real Madrid post. But speaking to my colleagues at Sky Germany for the past week, they’ve been reporting that if Potter was to lose his job, then Nagelsmann would be the No 1 target for Chelsea.

It all depends on if Nagelsmann wants to take up another job so quickly.

Chelsea need to appoint a new head coach, but it sounds like they will be taking their time. The information we’ve had since Monday from Sky Germany is that if Graham Potter was to lose his job, then Chelsea’s top target would be Julian Nagelsmann, who has just lost his job at Bayern Munich.

The information I’ve got from my colleague Florian Plettenburg at Sky Germany this evening is it is 50:50 as to whether Nagelsmann would be prepared to move to Chelsea at the moment. He’s lost his Bayern Munich job and would like to take a bit of time out. You don’t want to jump from just one job to another, especially when you’re somebody like him who knows he is going to be in demand.

The Real job could become available, Spurs are very keen as well. Sky Germany are saying that it is 50:50 as to whether he would be prepared to move quickly.

The complicating factor is his contractual situation with Bayern. If Chelsea wanted Nagelsmann now, even though he is no longer the Bayern manager, his contract would mean Chelsea would have to agree a deal with Bayern Munich. Sky Germany says that there has been no contact between Chelsea or Bayern about Nagelsmann. No negotiations at all.

The Bayern Munich chief executive Oliver Kahn appeared on Sky Germany this evening just before it was announced that Graham Potter had lost his job. Kahn said he didn’t expect Nagelsmann to move to another club this season and it would be more likely that he would move to another club in the summer.

From Bayern’s point of view, it would be complicated if Nagelsmann was to move to Chelsea. We could potentially have a Champions League semi-final in a month’s time between Chelsea and Bayern. In that situation, you could have Nagelsmann managing Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel – the former Chelsea manager – managing Bayern Munich.

My experience of covering Chelsea – the Chelsea manager has been someone with a massive personality. Somebody with a big ego, somebody with a CV with lots of trophies on it. You have to look at the people who have managed Chelsea in the past 20 to 25 years.

If you go back to September, it was a shock when Thomas Tuchel lost his job. You’re talking about a manager who had won three trophies in 20 months, who won the Champions League.

When Tuchel lost his job, Chelsea were the reigning Club World Cup champions, they were sixth in the Premier League. They had a bit of a mixed start to the season, but it was still a strange decision. Most people involved in Chelsea and football would say that. To sack a manager of the calibre of Thomas Tuchel and then the real risk to replace him with Graham Potter.

No disrespect to Graham Potter but under the previous ownership at Chelsea, he would not have got the job. He cost Chelsea £21m to get him and his coaching staff from Brighton. They made a massive investment on him, gave him a five-year contract. The new American owners were very impressed with him, the American owners thought he would be the man for the future.

They really, really backed him well beyond the point that most Chelsea supporters would want him to be sacked. If you’re Chelsea Football and you spend £550m in two transfer windows and you’re 11th in the Premier League, if you’re the manager of that club and that’s happening under your watch, that’s going to cost you your job.

A lot of the signings weren’t Graham Potter signings, that’s not how it works at Chelsea. The recruitment strategy from the owners is they want them to buy the best young players in the world and then make a big impact in the transfer window. Those singings weren’t Graham Potter singings. He had a say in them, he spoke to the players before they signed. But he wasn’t picking those players.

They were players who were given to him to work with. Players at Chelsea have a lot of power, you need a big personality manage then and to work with them. Jose Mourinho, Antonio Conte, Thomas Tuchel, Carlo Ancelotti, even Frank Lampard.

Yes, he was inexperienced but his aura and stature at the club meant he was respected immediately by the players. Graham Potter is a very, very good coach, but the Chelsea coach is one of the biggest jobs in world football. To do that job, you need to have the stature of a Mourinho, Conte or Tuchel.

What now for Potter?

I think it will damage his reputation at the top level. He got an incredible opportunity to manage a club like Chelsea, there was no way he could turn it down. He did his best, he carried himself impeccably at all times.

He took responsibility for things yesterday, he had to put up with a lot. People have been reporting on the fact that he may lose his job and he is one defeat away from losing his job for a long, long time. He has also spoken about threats sent to him and his family. I would have taken a lot out of him doing his job as well.

I’m sure he will be back. He’s a fabulous coach and manager, but a lot of mangers with many more trophies and successes on their CVs have lost their job at Chelsea, Chelsea was just one level too high for him at this point of his career.

The results have been atrocious. They’re as close to the relegation zone as they are to the Champions League places. Something incredible has to happen for them to be in that competition next season.

I don’t want to criticise the Chelsea owners at all, but these are people who have very little experience of English football. They have a lot of experience of running investment companies, becoming very rich and running hedge funds but when it comes to English football, they are relative novices.

They would’ve been taking a lot of advise from different people, different agents and who would’ve advised them. At the time in September when they decided to sack Thomas Tuchel, a lot of people were surprised and there was a lot of things going on behind the scenes at the club.

It was a shock then and it was equally a shock that they decided to hire Potter. A lot of owners of big clubs wouldn’t have taken that risk but maybe it was a factor that they are inexperienced in English football which meant that they looked at Potter, what he was doing at Brighton, and identified him as the upcoming coach that they wanted to place their faith in.

But it didn’t make sense to a lot of people from the start and the jury was out from the beginning among Chelsea fans who were convinced he wasn’t the right man for the job.

Unfortunately, it just hasn’t worked out. In the short-term, Chelsea have got a game on Tuesday against Liverpool. It’s a massive game. Word went out from Chelsea this morning that Potter would be taking the news conference on Monday at Cobham.

People were reading into that his job was safe, but clearly that has proven not to be the case.

Source: Sky Sports

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