'The worst pre-season they've had' - Graham Potter reveals complaints from Chelsea players over preparations for 2022-23 campaign
- Blues headed to America in summer of 2022
- Changed manager early in the current campaign
- Still struggling for a spark and consistency
WHAT HAPPENED? The Blues headed to the United States when readying themselves for another Premier League campaign, but a stumble out of the blocks quickly led to the departure of Champions League-winning coach Tuchel in September. Potter has fared little better at the Stamford Bridge helm, leading to uncomfortable questions being asked of his future, but the man currently calling the shots in west London has now offered an explanation into one of the reasons his squad has struggled this season.
WHAT THEY SAID: Potter has told reporters when asked about his current situation: “It's really tough. My quote a few weeks ago is that it's the toughest job in football, and there are reasons for that. Speaking to a few of the experienced guys, they said it was the worst pre-season they've had. Organisationally, the tour didn't work as well as they'd like. I wasn't there so I can't say. We thought we made progress, but the first half against Southampton was below par. The sky can fall. These are some of the facts. Inconvenient facts, but that's the situation.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Potter and his expensively-assembled squad have been testing the patience of a loyal fan base this season, with those in charge aware that criticism is going to come their way. Potter added: “Supporters, rightly so, are upset because we lose at home to Southampton. Supporters care, when they are upset they make their frustrations known. There's nothing I can say that will make the supporters – if they are against us – with us. The solution is that we have to win football matches. Results haven't been good enough, 1-0 defeat to Southampton isn't good enough, they are entitled to be angry.”
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WHAT NEXT? While jeers have rained down on Chelsea at times this season, Potter maintains that “there’s always been support” from his board. A crunch derby date with London neighbours Tottenham next on the agenda for the Blues.