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Graham Potter set to take reins at Chelsea with Thomas Tuchel axe to cost more than €25m

Graham Potter is set to replace Thomas Tuchel at Stamford Bridge. Photo: Zac Goodwin/PA© PA

Matt LawTelegraph.co.uk

Graham Potter is set to succeed Thomas Tuchel as Chelsea head coach after the German was sacked by the club’s new owners just three months after taking over the club.

Co-controlling owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali met with Potter yesterday after being granted permission by Brighton hours after the dismissal of Tuchel.

Although Boehly and Eghbali will also talk to out-of-work Mauricio Pochettino, sources claimed last night that the Chelsea job is effectively Potter’s to lose – and the expectation is that an agreement will be reached on a long-term contract for the 47-year-old today.

That would allow Potter to take charge of Chelsea’s Premier League trip to Fulham on Saturday.

The entire operation will cost Chelsea over £20m (€23m), with Potter’s release clause thought to be set at £15m (€17.3m) and Tuchel in line to receive £7m (€8.1m) in compensation, and comes less than a week after closure of the transfer window, during which the owners spent almost £300m (€345.7m)

The owners want to appoint someone they believe can cultivate a new culture within the club, and is ready to listen to their ideas and explain his own philosophies.

Potter has done just that in his managerial jobs, at Ostersunds, Swansea and Brighton, who sit fourth in the Premier League despite selling key players such as Marc Cucurella, to Chelsea, and midfielder Yves Bissouma to Spurs.

While he is yet to manage in the Champions League, Potter took Ostersunds to the last 32 of the Europa League on a budget of just under £1m in 2018, with an eye-catching 2-1 win over Arsenal.

Tuchel was sacked yesterday morning after being called to a meeting at the Cobham training ground at around 9.30am, following the previous night’s Champions League defeat by Dinamo Zagreb.

It is understood that Tuchel, who met Boehly and Eghbali face-to-face, was surprised by the news, but reacted calmly and minutes after the meeting, Chelsea confirmed his dismissal. His coaches Arno Michels and Zsolt Low have also left.

Chelsea’s shocked players were informed via text messages and gathered at Cobham before their scheduled 2pm training session that was taken by coach Anthony Barry, head coach of the development squad Mark Robinson and loan player technical coach Andy Myers.

It is understood that Boehly and Eghbali addressed the playing squad and offered to answer any questions before travelling to meet with Potter and his representatives.

Though Tuesday night’s Champions League defeat underlined Chelsea’s mediocre start to the season, the decision to sack Tuchel was not based purely on results or their underwhelming performances.


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