How long will Graham Potter’s tenure last at Chelsea?
It’s a question worth asking after the Blues sacked Thomas Tuchel following a Champions League loss to Dinamo Zagreb on Tuesday. Potter, the Brighton & Hove Albion manager, is reportedly set to take over following Tuchel’s dismissal.
Tuchel was in charge at Tottenham for less than two years. And that’s a pretty lengthy tenure by current Chelsea standards. Since Claudio Ranieri was manager from September 2000 to May of 2004, the club has had 13 different permanent managers in 18 seasons. That includes two stints by Jose Mourinho and doesn’t include the interim manager tenures of Guus Hiddink and current interim coach Anthony Barry.
Potter comes over from Brighton after his team had one of the best starts in the Premier League. Brighton’s recruitment has been solid throughout his tenure and the team recently sold fullback Marc Cucurella to Chelsea for over $50 million after Cucurella played just a season for the team.
Chelsea’s search for a manager needed to proceed quickly. The Blues open the Premier League weekend against Fulham in the early kickoff on Saturday. Fulham has been solid after getting promoted from the Championship and has eight points through six games while sitting 10th in the standings. Chelsea is just two points above Fulham in sixth.
It’ll likely take a few matches for Potter to put his stamp on the team and get them playing the way he wants. But it better not take much longer than that. While Chelsea’s previous managerial turnover in the 2000s all came under previous owner Roman Abramovich, new owner Todd Boehly has shown that he’s willing to make quick changes too. Whether or not he makes quick firings like Abramovich remains to be seen. But the desire for success at Chelsea and the team’s offseason transfer expenditures likely mean that Potter won’t have a much longer leash than any of the managers that have come before him.
Here’s what you need to know to bet this weekend’s EPL slate. All odds are from BetMGM.
Fulham vs. Chelsea (over/under 2.5 goals)
It’s tempting to bet Fulham here but we’re inclined to go with the over and stay away from the match result.
Liverpool vs. Wolves (3.5)
Wolves has had trouble scoring goals all season long and we can either envision a 1-0 win for Liverpool or a 5-0 win. We’ll take Liverpool to bounce back from the Napoli defeat on Wednesday.
Southampton vs. Brentford (2.5)
Both teams find themselves solidly in the middle of the table and a tie feels like the right result here.
Leicester City vs. Aston Villa (2.5)
Aston Villa (+180)
These two teams occupy two of the bottom four spots in the league as Leicester sits in last with just a single point through the first six games. We’ll go over 2.5 goals and won’t be surprised if Brendan Rodgers’ tenure ends if Villa wins this game.
Bournemouth vs. Brighton & Hove (2.5)
Bournemouth is experiencing the interim manager bounce after Scott Parker’s firing while Brighton is suddenly a club in transition. We’ll go with Brighton at these odds despite Potter’s departure.
Manchester City vs. Tottenham (3.5)
This feels like a game where City will have 70% of the possession as Tottenham tries to frustrate Pep Guardiola’s side with a compact and organized defense. We’ll go with under 3.5 goals.
Arsenal vs. Everton (2.5)
Arsenal suffered its first loss of the season to Manchester United last weekend. Everton, meanwhile, hasn’t won yet. The Toffees won’t win here either. Arsenal is the pick.
West Ham vs. Newcastle (2.5)
West Ham (+135)
Both of these teams have just one win so far but Newcastle is in 11th and West Ham is in 18th because Newcastle has four draws to West Ham’s one. We’ll go with the tie here.
Crystal Palace vs. Manchester United (2.5)
United has been playing well since a horrid start while Palace could be better. The under is tempting and we’ll go with it.
Leeds vs. Forest (2.5)
Leeds sits ninth in the table while Forest is 19th after signing over a dozen players during the offseason. Leeds is the pick.