Chelsea sack Thomas Tuchel: Graham Potter among Todd Boehly's coaching candidates after Champions League defeat

Chelsea sack Thomas Tuchel: Graham Potter among Todd Boehly’s coaching candidates after Champions League defeat

chelsea sacked Thomas Tuchel on Wednesday and received permission from Brighton to hold talks with Graham Potter as they seek to quickly find a new head coach who can bail them out of their early-season quagmire.

Tuchel, winner of the Champions League in 2021 with the Blues, leaves Stamford Bridge only seven games into the season. Three of them ended in a 1-0 loss to Dinamo Zagreb on Tuesday night, after which Tuchel admitted he was unable to understand his team’s recent struggles.

It’s a far cry from a season ago when Chelsea were reigning European champions and had an electric start to the new season. Tuchel was the most popular manager Stamford Bridge had seen in years and fan admiration only grew during the turmoil that surrounded the club’s takeover earlier this year. Todd Boehly, who took over as owner from Roman Abramovich in May, backed his head coach with the biggest spending spree ever undertaken by a Premier League club in a single window.

Many of these players, including Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Rahim Sterling, were recruits that Tuchel himself had defended. Instead, it will be a different head coach leading this team.

A club statement said: “On behalf of everyone at Chelsea FC, the club would like to express their gratitude to Thomas and his staff for all their hard work during their time at the club. Thomas will rightfully have a place in the club. Chelsea’s history after winning the Champions League, Super Cup and Club World Cup in his time here.

“As the new ownership group reaches 100 days since taking over the club and continue their hard work to take the club forward, the new owners believe now is the right time to make this transition. Chelsea coaches will support the squad in training and preparing for our upcoming games as the club moves quickly to appoint a new head coach.”

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Potter is among the main contenders to succeed Tuchel and Chelsea acted swiftly on Wednesday morning as Brighton granted their request to speak to the 47-year-old. Mauricio Pochettino is also part of the reflection of the Blues.

Meanwhile, Chelsea have not confirmed the composition of their coaching staff for Saturday’s trip to Fulham. However, club insiders have told CBS Sports that they expect the trio of Zsolt Low, Arno Michels and Benjamin Weber, who have all joined Tuchel, to leave alongside the outgoing head coach. If a new boss is not named, assistant coach Anthony Barry could play an important role in the Blues’ preparations for a tricky London derby against an in-form opponent.

Tuchel’s sacking represents a stunning fall from grace for Tuchel, even by Chelsea standards, where managers tended to be considered some of the most indispensable employees by former owner Roman Abramovich. Boehly’s early actions suggested that had changed, with the likes of Petr Cech and Marina Granovskaia leaving without replacements, increasing the head coach’s power base.

This was made clear in the decision to sign Aubameyang, 33, on transfer deadline day in a €12million deal. Boehly had already sanctioned Romelu Lukaku’s loan move to Inter Milan with a sizable loss, less than 12 months after the previous regime signed him for a club-record €115m.

Meanwhile, on August 20, Tuchel revealed that his representatives were in talks with the club’s hierarchy to extend his contract. Since then, Chelsea have lost to Leeds United, Southampton and Dinamo, with this latest loss meaning Tuchel leaves the club after exactly 100 games in charge. His average of 2.04 points per game has only been exceeded by four permanent managers (Jose Mourinho in his first term, Avram Grant, Antonio Conte and Maurizio Sarri) since the start of the Abramovich era; unlike that quartet, he also delivered Champions League glory to west London.


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