Romano claims Potter arrival ‘was not easy for some’ Chelsea stars as he reveals failed hijacking

Chelsea forward Raheem Sterling talks to Graham Potter Credit: Alamy
Chelsea forward Raheem Sterling talks to Graham Potter Credit: Alamy

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano says Graham Potter’s arrival at Chelsea “was not easy for some” after Raheem Sterling admitted he wants to play as a winger.

Potter replaced Thomas Tuchel in September and the Blues were unbeaten in all competitions under their new boss before their 4-1 loss to Brighton over the weekend.

The former Seagulls manager has continued to make a number of tactical and personnel changes as he works out his best team.

Before the defeat to Brighton, former Liverpool midfielder Danny Murphy pointed out Potter’s constant “tinkering” as a worry.

Murphy said: “He’s [Potter] tweaking and tinkering the formation and personnel a lot. I’m all for adaptability, it’s not a bad thing but the best teams don’t tend to adapt every week for the opposition.

“I think at the moment it’s understandable because he’s trying to find his best formation and what players he trusts in certain positions.

“But moving down the line I would expect a more consistent best team and best formation and having confidence in that side.”

Sterling has not had the best start to life since swapping Manchester City for Chelsea in the summer transfer window with the England international recently outlining his frustration at playing out of position.

Sterling told The Kelly and Wrighty Show: “It’s like anything, you have come to a new team so there are different things going to be asked of you.

“It’s a different shape, I haven’t played in a back five for a while, so it’s something the manager has asked me to do – something that I’m more than happy to do as well.

“When we have the ball I’m high and wide, but of course you have to defend as well. The more I’m close to the box that’s better for myself but the more time I have to figure it out in this position I’m happy to play it.

“I feel my best position is a winger, that’s for sure, but the manager has his way of playing and he hasn’t had a full pre-season. He has come in and grabbed it with both hands, I think he’s trying to figure out the best personnel for positions.”

But Romano thinks the Sterling situation is “normal” for a new manager with all the Chelsea squad “keen on working with Potter”.

“I think it’s normal to have this kind of situation as Potter arrived just 40 days ago and it takes time to understand all the player’s priorities,”  Romano told Caught Offside.

“For sure the manager change was not easy for some players but they are all keen on working with Potter for present and future, including Sterling. There’s no problem.”

Romano also had some Chelsea transfer news with the transfer expert claiming that the Blues “tried to hijack” Paris Saint-Germain’s deal for Nordi Mukiele in the summer transfer window.

He added: “The Blues were keen to include Mukiele as part of the deal to let Timo Werner return to RB Leipzig. Still, Nordi decided to join PSG and it never changed. I don’t think he will change again in January, he’s part of the PSG project and there are no negotiations ongoing.”

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