Potter was sacked on Sunday night, less than seven months after taking charge at Stamford Bridge, with the club 11th in the table after a poor home defeat to Aston Villa.
The odds always looked to be against the English manager who struggled to gain the respect of his players, win over the fans and work with the Blues’ new ownership who were making radical and wholesale changes behind the scenes.
Results on the pitch weren’t great – just 12 wins in 31 games – but off it is where the real damage seems to have been done and Neville thinks that Potter will be relieved to have left a club in chaos.
The Manchester United legend told Sky Sports: ‘Graham Potter is a good man. He’ll have gone home after he was sacked and I bet there was an element of relief.
‘I don’t think he was enjoying it there, I bet he will have thought it was mad.
‘What he has been used to in terms of what his view of football is, he will have seen what is going on behind the scenes – they lost Petr Cech and Marina Granovskaia at the start of the season, that wasn’t planned.
‘They lost [Thomas] Tuchel, that wasn’t planned. He has come into a club that is in massive transition, they [Todd Boehly and co.] have paid millions of pounds, they don’t know what they are doing to be fair, they are learning on the job.
‘He’ll probably think, “These lot are mad”, and actually I suspect that Graham Potter has gone to Winstanley and said, “Get me out of here”.’
Attention now turns as to who will replace Potter, with former Bayern Munich manager Julian Nagelsmann the early frontrunner, while Pochettino, ex-Barcelona boss Luis Enrique and Napoli’s Luciano Spalletti are among the names on a very long shortlist.
Neville thinks that Pochettino, who has been out of work since leaving PSG last summer is the right man for the job as the Argentine won’t be complacent about signing new players.
He added: ‘Everything Chelsea is saying and Boehly is saying is that they have spent £600million and they have done their spending apart from a centre-forward for the next three years.
‘If they sign [Zinedine] Zidane, [Diego] Simeone, Enrique, they are going to want another £300m because they won’t like some of the players they have signed.
‘They have got to appoint a manager that is going to inherit and like the squad they have already got. I think that man, because a lot of them are young, is Pochettino.’
For now, Bruno Saltor will take charge of Chelsea when they host Liverpool on Tuesday night.
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