Graham Potter is sacked by Chelsea after less than seven months in charge with Blues languishing in 11th after winning only 12 of his 31 games

Graham Potter is sacked by Chelsea after less than seven months in charge with Blues languishing in 11th after winning only 12 of his 31 games

By Agencies

London – Graham Potter has been sacked as Chelsea manager after less than seven months in charge with the Blues languishing a lowly 11th in the Premier League.

It comes after their dismal 2-0 defeat to Aston Villa on Saturday, with Potter winning just 12 of his 31 games in charge.

Bruno Saltor – who made the switch with Potter from Brighton to be part of his backroom staff at Stamford Bridge – will take charge of the team as interim manager.

Chelsea players complaining to the center official on Saturday. Courtesy photo.

A statement on behalf of co-owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali said: “On behalf of everyone at the club, we want to thank Graham sincerely for his contribution to Chelsea.”

“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.

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

‘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.”

The statement on Chelsea’s website added that Potter ‘agreed to collaborate’ with the club to facilitate a smooth transition, and the Blues thanked the 47-year-old for his efforts and wished him well for the future.

Potter moved from Brighton to the Blues on September 8 last year, after the controversial dismissal of Thomas Tuchel by Boehly.

The Blues appeared to have finally turned a corner with three consecutive wins – against Leeds and Leicester in the Premier League, and Borussia Dortmund in Europe – but have slipped back again.

They were held 2-2 at home by relegation-threatened Everton just before the March international break, before Saturday’s 2-0 home loss to Aston Villa proved the final straw for Boehly.

Potter’s team were jeered off both at half-time and full-time at Stamford Bridge, with the fans who joined a social media clamour for the manager to be axed getting their wish.

It is the second change in manager since the American ownership brought Chelsea last summer, following the end of Roman Abramovich’s time with the club.

Potter won just 12 of his 31 matches in charge of the club, drawing eight and losing 11 for a poor win percentage of 38.7.

They spent £323m on transfers in January, with an eye on the future, including a British record £107m to acquire the services of Enzo Fernandez from Benfica, and swooping in to sign Mykhailo Mudryk ahead of league leaders Arsenal.

Despite their best endeavours in the transfer market, and in training, Chelsea have not been clinical in front of goal during matches.

Chelsea sit 11th in the Premier League table, and face a rocky road to try and get themselves back into contention for the European spots by the end of May.

They have been drawn against reigning champions Real Madrid in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, a daunting prospect given the current upheaval.

Chelsea’s next fixture is at home to Liverpool in midweek.

Mauricio Pochettino, Zinedine Zidane, Luis Enrique and former Chelsea coach Brendan Rodgers are among the names being touted as favourites to take on the hot-seat at Stamford Bridge.

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