CHELSEA players are said to have been STUNNED by the news of Graham Potter’s firing – and only found out online.
Potter was sacked just six months after taking over from Champions League winner Thomas Tuchel.
But after a string of performances and results, he was sacked as Blues boss with the club sitting in 11th place.
According to The Telegraphconcerned players contacted their representatives on Sunday night after learning the news.
It is alleged that the squad only learned of Potter’s departure through the official statement released around 8 p.m.
Those who were part of Saturday’s defeat to Aston Villa had a recovery session on Sunday while the others trained normally.
But the majority of the squad received no advance notice of Potter’s firing and returned home to find out via social media.
A source told the newspaper: “Most of the players had no idea until they saw the statement.
“People asked who would train on Monday and who is in charge on Tuesday.
“They were pretty much all recovering or training on Sunday, so they were shocked to find this at home.”
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Potter was due to carry out his pre-match press duties ahead of the game against Liverpool on Monday.
But by 3pm the club had begun removing him following internal talks between Stamford Bridge bosses.
It’s understood Chelsea will not have to pay the full value of Potter’s £50 million contract, which still had four years to go.
Defeat against Villa – Potter’s SEVENTH of the season – shoved Chelsea to the bottom half of the table.
And it turned out to be the nail in the coffin for the club owners, who had watched the match from the stands.
Sports directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley are said to have made the decision to fire Potter.
And they had the full support of co-controlling owners Boehly and Behdad Eghbali.
Stewart and Winstanley – backed by Boehly and Eghbali – will now lead the process of finding Potter’s permanent replacement.
Julian Nagelsmann is one of the favourites after his shock dismissal from Bayern Munich, where Tuchel succeeded him.
But Mauricio Pochettino – who was interviewed for the job last year before Potter was hired – is also in the mix.
The Chelsea board has a relationship with Nagelsmann’s agent, as he also represents Timo Werner, who was sold back to RB Leipzig last summer.
Sporting director Stewart and technical director Christopher Vivell also worked with Nagelsmann in Leipzig.
Bruno Saltor – a member of Potter’s coaching staff – has taken over the interim charge as Chelsea look for a permanent successor.