Graham Potter has opened up on the ‘different challenge’ he is facing at Chelsea ahead of his first game in charge of the club.
Chelsea host Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League’s group stage tomorrow evening, in what will be Potter’s first fixture as head coach since replacing Thomas Tuchel.
The 47-year-old has signed a long-term deal after impressing at Brighton and has discussed the challenge that awaits him after taking charge at Stamford Bridge.
“The football club here, the history, the tradition, the size of the club and to compete in the Champions League, it is a completely different challenge to the ones I’ve had,” he told his pre-match press conference.
“I had three fantastic years at Brighton, an amazing football club, but I’m very thankful that the ownership here has put their support and belief in me to work with the quality we have here, to be competitive and put a team on the pitch our supporters are very proud of.”
The clash with Salzburg will be Potter’s first taste of Champions League football, following a coaching career path that has taken in spells at Ostersunds, Swansea and Brighton before joining Chelsea.
The Blues boss admits he is relishing the chance to compete among Europe’s elite, as Chelsea look to bounce back from an opening defeat at Dinamo Zagreb.
“My experiences in the Champions League were as a supporter. I have Europa League experience with Ostersunds, going to Galatasaray and winning there was fantastic, PAOK as well. This is an amazing evening for us, it is really exciting.
“At the same time, we’ve been focussing on the game, trying to get a team together and getting to know the players and staff at the training ground. There is no denying, we are really looking forward to it.”