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Graham Potter sacked by Chelsea after less than seven months in charge

Chelsea have sacked manager Graham Potter after less than seven months in charge following Saturday's 2-0 home defeat by Aston Villa.

It was the Englishman's 11th defeat in 31 games since replacing Thomas Tuchel at Stamford Bridge on 8 September.

Chelsea have dropped to 11th in the Premier League - 12 points outside the top four - having spent more than £550m on new players this season.

The club's owners said they were "disappointed" to sack Potter.

Chelsea say Potter "has agreed to collaborate with the club to facilitate a smooth transition" and that Bruno Saltor, who worked with Potter at Brighton, will take charge of the team as interim head coach.

In a statement, co-controlling owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali said: "We have the highest degree of respect for Graham as a coach and as a person."

He has always conducted himself with professionalism and integrity and we are all disappointed in this outcome.

Chelsea host Liverpool in the Premier League on Tuesday and face Real Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final on 12 April.

There have now been 13 managerial changes in the Premier League this season - three more than in any other previous campaign - with Leicester also sacking Brendan Rodgers earlier on Sunday.

"Along with our incredible fans, we will all be getting behind Bruno and the team as we focus on the rest of the season," the Chelsea owners added.

"We have 10 Premier League games remaining and a Champions League quarter-final ahead. We will put every effort and commitment into every one of those games so that we can end the season on a high."

He won 12 of his 31 games in charge in all competitions and managed 1.27 points per game in the Premier League - the joint-lowest of any manager to take charge of 20 or more games for Chelsea in the Premier League, alongside Glen Hoddle.

Former Spanish right-back Bruno, 42, spent seven years as a player at Brighton before retiring in 2019 and moving into coaching.

Potter was Boehly's first managerial appointment since taking over the club in May 2022, with the Englishman impressing in his three years at Brighton.

Speaking to Sky Sports after her Chelsea side's Women's Super League win over Aston Villa on Sunday, boss Emma Hayes said: "Obviously I'm upset for Graham and the club. I know everybody wanted to make it work."

"If the owners feel like they have to go in another direction then of course, as always, I support the decisions and wish Graham the best."

"With 10 games left to play in the Premier League, I'm sure the boys will do everything to get us back on track. I'm a manager and I'm always gutted when managers lose their job."

Potter replaced Tuchel, who won three trophies in 20 months at Stamford Bridge, in September when the Blues were sixth in the top flight, following a summer during which they spent £255m on transfers.

Owner Boehly went on another remarkable spending spree in January, shelling out £288m.

Argentina midfielder Enzo Fernandez and Ukraine forward Mykhailo Mudryk were among eight mid-season signings - but the new additions have struggled to click on the pitch.

Credit: BBC



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