Chelsea have announced Graham Potter as their head coach on a five-year contract.
Potter becomes the first managerial appointment of the Todd Boehly era following his summer takeover. The American is still acting as sporting director having moved on director Marina Granovskaia, chairman Bruce Buck and technical and performance advisor Petr Cech in a complete overhaul of Roman Abramovich’s trusted staff.
Sky Sports News understands Chelsea have paid Brighton a total of £21.5m in compensation for Potter and the other four members of staff that have followed him to Stamford Bridge.
‘We are thrilled to bring Graham to Chelsea,” said Boehly after Potter’s appointment. “He is a proven coach and an innovator in the Premier League who fits our vision for the club. Not only is he extremely talented on the pitch, he has skills and capabilities that extend beyond the pitch which will make Chelsea a more successful club.
“He has had a major impact at his previous clubs and we look forward to his positive impact at Chelsea. We look forward to supporting him, his coaching team and the squad in realising their full potential in the coming months and years.”
The 47-year-old will be followed from Brighton to Chelsea by Kyle MacAulay, the recruitment expert that’s been with him since his Ostersunds days, assistant head coach Billy Reid, goalkeeper coach Ben Roberts and first-team coach Bjorn Hamberg.
“I am incredibly proud and excited to represent Chelsea FC, this fantastic football club,” said Potter. “I am very excited to partner with Chelsea’s new ownership group and look forward to meeting and working with the exciting group of players and to develop a team and culture that our amazing fans can be proud of.
“I would also like to place my sincere thanks to Brighton & Hove Albion for allowing me this opportunity and in particular Tony Bloom and all the players, staff and supporters for their continued support during my time at the club.”
Potter’s first game in charge will be a west London derby at Fulham on Saturday, kick-off 12.30pm.
Tuchel was sacked on Wednesday in the wake of Chelsea’s 1-0 loss to Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League and just six games into the new Premier League season.
Chelsea owner Boehly met Potter in central London on Wednesday afternoon for what was described as “positive talks” about the Brighton manager’s future role at Stamford Bridge and the club’s plans to develop the whole football operation.
Meanwhile, Brighton U21 coach Andrew Crofts will take charge of the Seagulls on an interim basis, supported by assistant Shannon Ruth, set-play coach Nick Stanley, Adam Lallana and assistant goalkeeping coach Jack Stern.