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Absolute Chelsea

Kalidou Koulibaly ready to seize Chelsea chance after showing Graham Potter patience

Matthew Debono

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Kalidou Koulibaly ready to seize Chelsea chance after showing Graham Potter patience

Kalidou Koulibaly insists he is happy to remain patient for his chance under Graham Potter, but insists he will be ready to give everything when he is called upon by the Chelsea head coach. 

The 31-year-old signed for Chelsea in the summer from Napoli under Thomas Tuchel’s management, however now finds himself with a new boss months later and being managed by Potter. 

He has also had to remain extremely patient in Potter’s opening month in charge of Chelsea. Koulibaly hasn’t featured in either of the 47-year-old’s first two games against RB Salzburg and Crystal Palace. 

Chelsea have a vital Champions League clash on Wednesday night against AC Milan at Stamford Bridge, a competition Koulibaly has experience in, and he will be eager to be given a chance by Potter. 

Chelsea's Kalidou Koulibaly during the warm up before the match. (Alamy)
Chelsea's Kalidou Koulibaly during the warm up before the match. (Alamy)

They need a win against the current Serie A champions but there is competition for places in defence and Koulibaly is doing everything he can to put himself in contention to start.

"I'm easy, I know my time will come, we have a lot of games,” said the central defender ahead of the game. “I will give everything in training. For the moment, I'm working good and giving my best to show him that he can use me on the pitch.

"The most important thing is that Chelsea win this game tomorrow. We absolutely have to win tomorrow. We have prepared to win, I hope we can."

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Koulibaly has suffered since Thomas Tuchel was replaced. The Senegal international also revealed how tough it has been on the players despite the group giving their all to adapt to Potter’s ways.

He added: "We know when we change trainers, it's tough for the players. Mr Potter spoke to us about what he expects on and off the pitch.

"We are leading in a good way, we keep on going, working to give everything he wants.

Chelsea's Kalidou Koulibaly during the Premier League match against Crystal Palace. (Alamy)
Chelsea's Kalidou Koulibaly during the Premier League match against Crystal Palace. (Alamy)

"It's tough, but it's the beauty of football. We always have to improve to be the best, we have a lot of talent and big players.

"We showed a lot of character at the weekend and we hope to show it tomorrow."

Potter understands the situation Koulibaly finds himself in having not played since his appointment. However, he was full of praise for the centre-back. 

"I've been impressed with him,” responded Potter. “He understands his situation that he has to wait to play. His response has been fantastic, hard-working, and trained very well.

"It's not the perfect situation, but with his character he will play an important role."

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Kalidou Koulibaly, Chelsea, Football, Graham Potter, Champions League

Matthew Debono
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