Premier League • England

Pundit has ‘funny feeling’ Potter will fall into worrying Lampard trap to spring Chelsea downfall

Graham Potter, September 2022

Graham Potter will have to get the dressing room on his side if he is to succeed at Chelsea, says one pundit who pointed to Frank Lampard’s downfall.

The Blues have entered a new era under the former Brighton manager following the sacking of Thomas Tuchel. Tuchel won the Champions League at Stamford Bridge, but a mixed start to the current campaign cost him his job.

Recently-appointed Chelsea owner Todd Boehly also did not see eye to eye with Tuchel – but hopes Potter can succeed.

The 47-year-old has yet to get his teeth really stuck into life at Chelsea because of recent postponements. Indeed, his only assignment so far has been the 1-1 Champions League draw with RB Salzburg.

As such, there is anticipation over how Potter will fare in the Premier League with the London club. Ultimately, their aim is to win the title after five seasons without a top-flight crown.

According to former Premier League star Don Hutchison, though, Potter could fall into a trap that cost Frank Lampard.

“I have a funny feeling that Graham Potter, and not because it’s Graham Potter, he is going to struggle at Chelsea,” the pundit said.

“I am not sold on that dressing room, I don’t feel it’s a good dressing room.

“All the way back to Frank Lampard when he was managing some of the individuals. I would like to see how some of these players and individuals perform for Graham Potter, I hope they do because he is a fantastic manager.”

Graham Potter could struggle at Chelsea – Hutchison

Former Chelsea star Lampard rejoined the Premier League giants as manager in the summer of 2019.

While he secured a top-four Premier League finish in his first season, a poor run of form cost him his job the campaign after.

Nevertheless, he set up Chelsea’s Champions League group stage campaign ahead of the Blues’ triumph in the final against Manchester City in the final.

Under Lampard, Chelsea had key figures such as Jorginho and Antonio Rudiger at the helm, with the former still there.

Former Napoli centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly has joined this summer. What’s more, former Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has moved to Stamford Bridge. The Gabon star lost his place at the Emirates Stadium due to disciplinary issues with Mikel Arteta.

And Hutchison has concerns for Potter handling such talents, given his previous work with Brighton and Ostersunds.

The pundit added to ESPN: “Getting them into the top four, he can certainly do it – of course he can – but I think it’s going to be tight.

“I think I would give them a 30 per cent chance.”

Manager set for watershed moment

Potter has indeed never managed big personalities like Aubameyang and Koulibaly in his career.

And handling those players while keeping the rest of his dressing room in check will definitely be a mark of whether he succeeds in west London or not.

As well as the players, the step up in itself from Brighton to Chelsea is also a big one for Potter.

The manager left Brighton in fourth in the Premier League, their highest-ever ranking in the football pyramid.

However, finishing fourth is a pre-requisite for Chelsea, with a higher ranking more than expected.

Potter’s first Premier League test for his new club comes away at Crystal Palace next weekend. After that, the Blues face AC Milan in a Champions League game they need to win.

READ MORE: Willian urges Potter not to discard ‘important’ Chelsea man who should make his life easier