Thomas Tuchel has described his disappointment at departing Chelsea after being sacked as manager this week.
The German arrived at west London in January last year to replace Frank Lampard with a remit to steady the sinking ship.
The Blues were languishing in ninth place in the Premier League when Tuchel took over. In just six months, he guided Chelsea to a top-four finish, the FA Cup final and an improbable Champions League triumph.
The Club World Cup and European Super Cup trophies were collected the following season as he won the hearts of Chelsea fans even more.
The former Paris Saint-Germain manager looked like he would be at the helm for a long time. However, he was sacked after his relationship with the new Chelsea owners deteriorated.
Tuchel had always reiterated his desire to stay at Chelsea for several years but will now be looking to begin a new chapter elsewhere.
Speaking for the first time since his departure, he took to his Twitter account to describe his devastation at having to leave the club where he ‘felt at home’.
“This is one of the most difficult statements I have ever had to write – and it is one which I hoped I would not need to do for many years,” he wrote.
“I am devastated that my time at Chelsea has come to an end.
“This is a club where I felt at home, both professionally and personally. Thank you so much to all the staff, the players, and the supporters for making me feel very welcome from the start.
“The pride and joy I felt at helping the team to win the Champions League and the Club World Cup will stay with me forever.
“I am honoured to have been a part of this club’s history, and the memories of the last 19 months will always have a special place in my heart.”
Tuchel was replaced by former Brighton & Hove Albion manager Graham Potter who now has some very big shoes to fill.
The Englishman will get his chance to win over the Chelsea faithful when the Blues welcome Red Bull Salzburg to Stamford Bridge in their second Champions League tie in midweek.
It will be Potter’s debut in the competition as a manager.
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