Graham Potter responds firmly to Tottenham speculation ahead of Arsenal

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Friday, 21st May 2021, 6:38 pm
Updated Friday, 21st May 2021, 6:40 pm
Brighton and Hove Albion head coach Graham Potter

Brighton boss Graham Potter insists taking over at Tottenham is “nothing I have considered”.

Potter remains among the favourites to become the permanent successor to Jose Mourinho at Premier League rivals Spurs.

But the 46-year-old, who has received widespread praise for Albion’s slick style of play, says he is fully committed to his current club ahead of Sunday’s season finale at Arsenal.

“I don’t pay too much attention to things that are outside of my control, things that get written, or speculation,” he said.

“I am focused on this job, trying to finish the season off as strongly as we can. I am excited by the team, I am excited by the club, so I just focus on that.

“It (the Tottenham job) is nothing I have considered. I have got a contract here. I am committed to this, we’ve got a lot to do, we’re just at the start of what we’re doing.”

Potter, whose deal runs until 2025, celebrated both his birthday and two years in charge of Brighton on Thursday.

He further enhanced his coaching reputation two days before the milestones when the Seagulls equalled their club-record Premier League points tally of 41 – set in his first season at the Amex Stadium – courtesy of a thrilling 3-2 victory over Manchester City.

The superb comeback success over the champions was marred slightly by a minor flashpoint at full-time.

Potter, who clashed with rival manager Pep Guardiola and City’s backroom staff due to the visitors taking exception to the way he responded to Albion’s first goal, remains repentant.

“We spoke after the game and I’ve got in touch through their guys just to reiterate my apologies to them,” replied Potter, when asked if he contacted Guardiola since the game.

“It’s not a great action from me, emotions probably got the better of me, caught up in the game and, as I have proven, I am not a robot, I am a human being that’s capable of making mistakes.

“Hopefully they can judge me over a 45-year life rather than a one-second action.”

Brighton travel to the Emirates Stadium this weekend seeking to break their record points haul.

Seagulls forward Danny Welbeck, whose existing contract expires in the summer, will miss the game against one of his former clubs due to a hamstring injury suffered against City.

Potter reiterated his desire to keep hold of the former England forward, who has scored scored six goals in 24 outings since arriving as a free agent in October.

“Danny, it will be too soon for him but he will take the break for the summer and be ready for pre-season,” said Potter.

“That (a new contract) is something the club will be speaking with Danny about and they are speaking.

“We are happy with what Danny’s done and he’s contributed to us.”

Brighton captain Lewis Dunk will return from a two-match ban in north London but Neal Maupay completes a three-game suspension, while Joel Veltman, Davy Propper, Solly March, Tariq Lamptey and Jose Izquierdo remain out injured.