New Chelsea manager Graham Potter has written a farewell letter to fans of his former club Brighton & Hove Albion, asking for forgiveness for his abrupt departure to the west London club.
Potter was confirmed as Chelsea manager on Thursday, just over 24 hours after they sacked Thomas Tuchel.
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The Englishman, who has earned a reputation as a coach who can significantly improve his players, led Brighton to ninth place in the Premier League last season — their best topflight finish.
“For some I recognise that the change that comes so suddenly in football can be hard to accept,” Potter wrote.
“I may not be able to persuade you all to forgive my departure — but I would at least like to take the chance to say thank you.
“I hope that you will understand that at this stage of my career, I felt I had to grasp a new opportunity.”
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Potter’s last match as Brighton manager was a 5-2 win over Leicester City that moved them up to fourth in the table, three points above Chelsea.
“I did not know at the time that it would be the end, but looking back now we played so well,” Potter added. “There was so much positivity around the club.
“The last few days have been an unexpected whirlwind. Leaving the training ground for the last time was a poignant moment.
“To my successor, whoever that may be, I would say, congratulations. You’ll be working for a great club with a fantastic squad, supported by a great chairman and board.”