Todd Boehly, the owner of Chelsea, talked to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the phone to give the striker some good news about his future.
The Gabonese striker joined the Blues on the last day that transfers could be made, and he played his first game against Dinamo Zagreb on Tuesday. But the talks are thought to have started because of Aubameyang’s relationship with Thomas Tuchel, who is no longer the manager.
Tuchel and Aubameyang used to work together at Borussia Dortmund, and the veteran player said he was “joyful” to see his old boss again. The reunion only lasted 59 minutes on the field, though, because Tuchel was fired the next morning after the loss in Croatia.
Aubameyang said after joining from Barcelona, “It will be an honor and a joy to play with Tuchel again. We had some good times together in Dortmund, so I’m really happy to play for him again. I’m sure we’ll do big things, and I’ll do my best to help the team.”
The Telegraph says that Boehly called Aubameyang personally and also talked to the rest of the team to reassure them. Aubameyang was told that he was a “club signing,” not just a Tuchel signing, and that he will still have a role to play under the new manager.
The player is said to be “appreciative” of what the owner did, but he, like Tuchel, is thought to have been surprised by what happened. Boehly and fellow controlling owner Behdad Eghbali spoke to the whole team on Wednesday, and work is being done to find Tuchel’s replacement.
Graham Potter, the manager of Brighton & Hove Albion, is going to London to talk with the Blues about taking over as Tuchel’s permanent replacement. Potter’s last press conference has been canceled as he gets closer to a move to Stamford Bridge.
The former Swansea and Ostersunds manager is thought to have a release clause of £16m, but Chelsea moved quickly to make the appointment official. There were even rumors that he could be brought in within 24 hours of Tuchel’s dismissal, but these turned out to be a bit off.
Brighton is currently three points ahead of Chelsea in the Premier League table. They have won four of their first six games this season, even though they sold defender Marc Cucurella to Chelsea for £62 million over the summer.
Chelsea’s next Premier League game is on Saturday against Fulham. On Wednesday, they play at home against Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League. Chelsea won’t play Brighton in the league until October, which could be Potter’s first trip back to the Amex Stadium.