Just in : Every word Graham Potter said on Chelsea positives, Adeyemi goal, and why Ben Chilwell was taken off, including all the missed chances
You must’ve liked a lot of that performance and surely the goals will come at some point?
“Overall we were pleased with the performance for big parts of the game. It’s complicated away from him in the Champions League, in a hostile environment, against a team that is in a good moment. So I thought it was an even first half, managed the game quite well, had some chances to counter, and hit the bar.
“Second half, apart from the one decisive action where we didn’t do well enough, we were the dominant team and created some good chances. With a little bit of luck and final execution, we would have got the deserved goal. It is what it is, we just have to keep going. It’s half time, it’s a tight game, and we’ll look forward to Stamford Bridge.”
The performances are more settled but how much of a blow is it to lose a goal in that manner?
“It’s a poor goal and we have to do better. We were pushing at the time and were the better team. So to concede in that manner is what we’re disappointed with. The players are honest and they know they can do better with that. We have to help them, of course, but we will focus on the positives.
“The performance was another step forward for us and before the game, you’re looking at Reece [James], Ben [Chilwell], Ruben [Lofut-Cheek] and Kalidou [Koulibaly], that was either their first or second game for quite some time. It isn’t easy to pick up the speed of the Champions League but I thought they did it well. We had three new players coming in and playing against a team in a good moment. We will improve and in three weeks’ time we can take the game at Stamford Bridge.”
It was a broken sequence that led to the Chelsea goal, what didn’t you do well enough looking at it?
“It was a counter-attack and sometimes things can happen so quickly, you anticipate getting the ball and they nick it away and are making run and we’re left short. So I have to look at it back and see what we can do. It’s that final bit of detail and sometimes when you feel comfortable in the game, you’re never comfortable at this level.”
How pleased are you to have Ben Chilwell back – but he did seem to be stretching out his right leg before he went off, is that a concern?
“About five minutes before he came off, he had a run down the side and had a kick on his ankle. I haven’t checked it over but I think it’s more a kick than anything else and probably a little bit of fatigue. That was his first start for some time so the idea before the game was to take him off at 60/70 minutes max. So that was the plan.”
“The players have been working really well. They know the situation we’re in and the challenges we have. But it’s exciting and their attitudes have been good as a group. Training has been fantastic and the spirit is there in the team. It’s just we need a little bit of luck, carry on the performance level of tonight, and keep improving.”
The touchline melee that happened at the end, what was behind that and what did you make of it?
“The ball was over in the dugout and Marc [Cucurella] was making a run to get the ball and there was a tackle. These things happen because it’s the knockout stage of the Champions League but it calmed down fairly quickly. Both teams wouldn’t want it to happen in an ideal world but sometimes they do and it got cleared up quickly. We moved on.”