Thiago Silva refuses to compare Graham Potter to former bosses

Thiago Silva admits ‘not enough time has passed’ for him to compare Graham Potter to some of his illustrious former managers – but hails the under-fire Chelsea boss as a ‘great human being’

  • The veteran defender refused to be drawn on making a comparison at this stage
  • Thiago Silva has enjoyed another stellar season at centre-back for Chelsea
  • Defender’s wife has been outspoken on matters related to team in recent months

Veteran defender Thiago Silva has refused to be drawn on comparing Graham Potter to some of his managers from yesteryear. 

Silva, 38, recently signed a 12-month extension to his current Chelsea deal keeping him at the club until next summer at least – indicating his value to Potter and an increasingly youthful-looking Blues side. 

Speaking ahead of Chelsea’s Champions League round of 16 first-leg tie against Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday night, the Brazilian was asked how Potter, who has endured a difficult few months at Stamford Bridge, compares to some of his former managers. 

Silva has enjoyed spells in his career overseen by the likes of Luiz Felipe Scolari, Carlo Ancelotti and Thomas Tuchel, who Potter replaced at Chelsea. 

Ever the diplomat, Silva said that ‘not enough time had passed’ for him under Potter to judge him alongside some of the other, perhaps more illustrious, names. 

Thiago Silva admitted not enough time had passed for him to compare Graham Potter to others

The veteran defender hailed Potter as a ‘great human being’ before explaining his hands-on approach to management

‘Not enough time has passed to comment on something so important. I don’t like to make comparisons of people, of styles, of work,’ he told Parimatch. 

‘Everyone has their own way of doing things. However, in the short time I’ve had with Potter, I can see he is a great person, a great human being.’

Silva went on to explain Potter’s particularly hands-on approach, certainly a difference in style to what he would have experienced under Ancelotti at Paris Saint-Germain, for instance. 

‘On the pitch, he’s a coach that shows you what you have to do and what you’ve been doing wrong,’ he said. 

‘Off the pitch, he’s an amazing human being which I think, when managing a football team, can actually be more important than being a coach. 

‘So he has these two aspects to him that I think are very important for someone in his position.’

Silva’s response to what could have proven to be a tricky question appeared to display more diplomacy than his wife, Isabelle da Silva, has shown at times this season. 

Seemingly extremely concerned by Chelsea’s poor form at points, Ms. Silva has pined for a version of her husband in midfield and attack, taken aim at the club for apparently removing photos of the defender from outside of Stamford Bridge and appeared to criticise Potter’s selection decisions after the side’s 4-0 humbling at Manchester City in the FA Cup. 

‘I just think that going back or looking for solutions when you take a hasty and totally wrong attitude is not wrong #goblues,’ she said after that defeat, a game in which her husband did not come off the bench. 

Following a third consecutive defeat at the hands of Fulham last month, which left Potter under increasing pressure amid accusations that he was failing to grasp the opportunity of the Chelsea job, she took aim at the perceived lack of quality in midfield and attack.

‘If there was a Thiago Silva in attack and one in midfield, with what we already have in defence…’ she wrote, followed by a sad crying emoji. 

After the Blues drew 2-2 with Tottenham at Stamford Bridge in August, one of the final games overseen by Potter’s predecessor, she wrote: ‘Today I went to Stamford Bridge, and I noticed that the photos changed around the stadium. But I don’t see a photo of @tsilva3 anywhere. Why @ChelseaFC?’

Indeed, she has also urged Chelsea supporters to only come to Stamford Bridge if they are willing to sing. 

The defender has been managed by some of the game’s greats, including Luiz Felipe Scolari

Silva – as he has done under Potter – formed the bedrock of former manager Thomas Tuchel’s side

The defender was managed by Carlo Ancelotti during his early days with Paris Saint-Germain

Silva recently signed a new deal that will keep him at Chelsea until next summer at least

Silva’s wife showed her disapproval at the Blues fans before chanting ‘Come on Chelsea’ during the defeat

‘She uploaded a video of herself on social media with the caption: ‘Don’t come to Stamford Bridge if you’re not singing COME ON CHELSEA !!! #blueisthecolour @ChelseaFC @tsilva3’. 

Meanwhile, in April last season, Belle leapt to the defence of her husband after claiming he was criticised for ‘not attacking enough’ during a 4-1 defeat at home by Brentford. 

‘I’m here in my box at Stamford Bridge,’ she said. ‘I just listened right now to the commentator, who said that Thiago Silva is not attacking enough,’ she said. 

‘Respect Thiago Silva because Thiago Silva arrived yesterday, Thiago Silva played for Brazil, Thiago Silva is very tired, Thiago Silva is 37-years-old, he plays like he is 20-years-old.

‘So respect him, he’s not a machine. He needs to relax, alright?’

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