JOE COLE believes not even the management greats of Sir Alex Ferguson and Brian Clough could get this Chelsea team immediately challenging for league titles and European cups.
Potter was a long-term appointment by ChelseaCredit: Getty
Not even the legendary United boss, Sir Alex Ferguson, could get Chelsea challenging for titles immediatelyCredit: Rex
Chelsea legend Cole says his former club have moved away from their desire of ‘immediate success’Credit: Rex
Potter replaced the sacked Thomas Tuchel on September 8 – but owing to fixture postponements has taken charge of just two games since.
A maiden victory in Europe’s elite competition is next on the list as the West Londoners face AC Milan on Wednesday in a must-win group game.
Yet Cole, 40 – who won three Prem titles, two FA Cups and a League cup during a seven-year stint with Chelsea – is not expecting any European triumphs this season under Potter.
Cole told SunSport: “When you come to Chelsea, you have to win games and trophies.
“The club has been built on that in the last 20 years. The fans are used to big games and going to cup finals, so Potter can’t just disregard that. It will always be in the background.
“But with so much newness around the club, they seem to have gone away from that immediate success plan that Chelsea are normally associated with.
“This appointment says to me that Chelsea are looking long-term, and it is an intelligent move because the likes of Manchester City are so far ahead.
“You could employ Sir Alex and Brian Clough, all the all-time greats of management together, and they still wouldn’t make an immediate impact in chipping away at City, competing for trophies with them.
“It will be a process to do that. it might take years over months, but I like the appointment.
“If you plucked a manager from the 80s or 90s and put him into the dressing room now, it would be a disaster.
“Potter is a modern manager with modern methods and modern ways of connecting with people. I think he is the future.
“If he is allowed to build, with the resources he has got, then he is the right man for the job.
“If you go down a road of stability with good people, eventually you will have success.”
Chelsea lost 1-0 in their Champions League opener away to Dinamo Zagreb – a result that saw Tuchel axed less than 24 hours later.
However, Cole does not believe this group of players have anything to prove to Potter or the fans as they look to secure a first win of their European campaign.
Cole added: “The players are a fantastic bunch. They have achieved a great amount. There are good senior players and it is a real good group.
“They won’t be happy with that performance [away in Zagreb]. They have pride and they will want to perform in a marquee game against one of the giants of European football.”
Academy graduate Conor Gallagher is set to make only his second appearance in Europe for his beloved Chelsea after scoring his first senior goal for the club – the winner at Palace.
And Cole said: “Gallagher is every bit a modern Chelsea player, young and hungry. He is a player that a manager loves.
“He is a Chelsea player through and through and is now a massive player for the club.”
***Watch Chelsea v AC Milan in the UEFA Champions League exclusively live on BT Sport 2 from 7pm on Wednesday 5th October. For more info, visit btsport.com***
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