Graham Potter admits he faces “challenges” in integrating over £300m of new talent at Chelsea but is adamant his side will be a united front for Wednesday’s Champions League trip to Borussia Dortmund.
The Blues have never faced BVB in European competition and will hope their first-leg meeting to begin the knockout stages will result in just their second win of 2023, despite splashing significant cash in January.
Chelsea’s form since the window closed has sparked rumours that the influx of new faces has led to tensions at Stamford Bridge, but Potter said: “It’s a squad that we’re really excited about but at the same time, we know there are challenges and work we have to do.
“Whenever you’re forming a new group, if all of us started to work together, we’d have to take some time, understand what makes us tick, understand how we can help each other.
“That is the impression I get when I see the boys on a daily basis. There is a good spirit, good harmony, they’re pushing each other in a good way. We had a good session today and you can see the guys are working hard to support the team and each other.
“So while there are challenges there are lots of things to be happy about as well.”
Potter’s stuttering 10th-placed side are set to face an opponent in excellent form, with six consecutive wins across all competitions.
BVB sit third in a tight Bundesliga table, just three points behind leaders Bayern Munich and two shy of second-placed Union Berlin.
Raheem Sterling was not on Chelsea’s flight to Germany but Wesley Fofana, Denis Zakaria and Mateo Kovacic will all return to Potter’s squad as they continue to build their fitness.
January additions Mykhailo Mudryk, Joao Felix and £106.8million man Enzo Fernandez will all be looking to make their first appearances in Europe wearing Chelsea blue.
While Potter was pleased to have bolstered his ranks, he was adamant it will take more than new owners with deep pockets to recreate Chelsea’s Champions League-winning formula of 2021.
The former Brighton boss added: “There is more pressure and expectation that when you spend money you should win. Thankfully, we know that football doesn’t work exactly like that. You need resources to win but you need more than that – and that is the challenge.
“There are things money can’t buy you and that’s where you have to do your work. My experience is that you have to align your resources very well, understand the opportunities you have and the strengths you have, and the way you can compete against teams with more resources than you. It can be done.
“Can Brighton win the Premier League four out of five times? No, probably not I’d say because 95 per cent of leagues are determined by finance. But if you’re not in those big ones, you want to be in the five per cent that is bucking the trend.
“How you do that is understanding your idea, the opportunity you have, and align whatever resources you have in a good way.
“It’s like warfare, sometime guerrilla warfare can win. You don’t always have to have the big guns and the big ammo. But sometimes it helps as well.”