Can Graham Potter make it work at Chelsea?
Todd Boehly has made a big gamble. Is the Englishman the right bet to make?
Here’s a question you may or may not know the answer to already:
How many English managers have won the English Premier League?
Yes, that’s right: zero.
Some might say that’s an argument against promoting them to big jobs. But equally, English managers might have been so unimpressive in the past thirty years in part because the system has overlooked bright coaches like Graham Potter in favour of famous ex-players.
Potter the player made eight appearances in the Premier League, which is eight more than you but hardly an illustrious career. He was, in his own words, “bang average”, spending most of his time bouncing around the divisions of the Football League. He was nominally a left back, but could “play badly anywhere”. That kind of tactical intelligence to adapt to different roles surely serves him well as a manager today, but it wasn’t regarded as such at the time.
“I started off at York City coaching the under-13s and really enjoyed it”, he said of his moves after retiring as a player. Not exactly the most illustrious start. “I couldn’t really rely on what I’d done as a player, because I wasn’t very good and the truth is, when I stopped playing at 30 and went into coaching at youth and university level, I was never going to get the York City job because people want somebody with experience.
"I had to go a different pathway and, thankfully, it’s worked out well.”
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