Brighton chief executive Paul Barber has admitted that Graham Potter’s departure to join Chelsea leaves new signing Billy Gilmour in a tricky situation.
Young midfielder Gilmour left Chelsea for Brighton on Deadline Day in a deal worth around £9m, believing he would get more minutes under Potter at The Amex than he would under Thomas Tuchel at Stamford Bridge.
Tuchel is even reported to have urged Gilmour to choose Brighton as Potter would be able to help his development, all while Chelsea owner Todd Boehly tried unsuccessfully to keep the Scot.
Just a few days later, however, Tuchel was relieved of his duties at Chelsea and Potter was brought in as his replacement, leaving Gilmour forced to watch on as the manager he wanted to play under took charge of his former employers.
“It isn’t ideal, far from ideal,” Barber said of Gilmour’s situation. “But my experience of working with professional footballers for the last 25 years is that they are resilient and pragmatic.
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“My limited experience of talking to Billy is that he is a very calm and very mature young man. He has been around football all his life and I’m sure he will take this in his stride. He will be helped by the other players and by Andrew Crofts and Shannon Ruth as need be.
“The fortunate position we are in is that we are not facing Premier League matches tomorrow, this week or next week. We have time.
“The timing around the transfer window closing was always potentially going to leave one or two players in Billy’s situation if this happens.
“Players are resilient and professional and we have a good group and the senior players will bridge any gap that might exist and we will move on from there.”
Joining Gilmour at Brighton is former Chelsea academy teammate Levi Colwill. The 19-year-old centre-back joined as a replacement for Blues-bound Marc Cucurella but saw just 12 minutes of Premier League action under Potter.