Football News

The Internet reacts to Graham Potter’s first Chelsea match: “Impressive how quickly he’s turned them into Brighton”

By Ben Green

The Internet reacts to Graham Potter’s first Chelsea match- “Impressive how quickly he’s turned them into Brighton”

Published: 22:39, 14 September 2022

Graham Potter collected a 1-1 draw against Red Bull Salzburg in his first game as the new Chelsea manager.

This game certainly wasn’t a classic as Chelsea strung together neat passing patterns and dominated large swathes of the contest, but they just lacked that killer instinct in the final third. The general consensus seems to be that Chelsea looked positive in their play but blunt up top.

One man who seemed determined to sharpen the knife was Raheem Sterling, who duly delivered for his new manager shortly after the second-half kicked off, jinking in-field and wrapping his right boot around the ball to caress home and start the Potter era in west London.

Scenes of ecstasy would soon make way for moments of dejection as the visiting Austrians went off-script and spoiled the party 15 minutes from time, with Noah Okafor levelling the scoreline. The result will no doubt be a learning curve for Potter and just adds a slight bit of pressure to one of football’s most unforgiving hotseats.

The Blues now sit rock bottom of Group E after two matches. It’s certainly not time to ring the crisis klaxons just yet, but for a club who championed this competition only last year, the early reading is worrying, particularly when you consider the clubs they’ve faced (with all due respect to Salzburg and Zagreb).

There were plenty of talking points from Potter’s first game in charge, such as Mason Mount’s seemingly deeper role — being utilised more as a No. 8 than as an outright attacking midfielder — while Cesar Azpilicueta was unnaturally deployed at centre-back as part of a back-four.

There was also a moment of applause for Thomas Tuchel in the 21st minute as fans stood up to vocalise their support for the former coach, who won them the Champions League in 2021. It was a nice touch, but for Potter, he knows that he has big shoes to fill as fans remain rightfully embittered by Tuchel’s dismissal.

It wasn’t a barnstormer, but it was a fascinating insight into how Chelsea could look under Potter, and we’ve scoured the Internet for some of the best reaction from the game. Was he a ‘Muggle’ or a tactical wizard?