By George Overhill

11th Sep, 2022 | 10:30am

Billy Gilmour only left Chelsea for Brighton because of Graham Potter - Alan Nixon

Billy Gilmour has been left “in limbo” at Brighton as the midfielder only left Chelsea to work with Graham Potter, who has now gone the other way, according to Alan Nixon.

The Scottish international midfielder signed for the Seagulls in a £9million deal on transfer deadline day (1 September), but apparently did not want to leave Stamford Bridge until being convinced by the now former manager at the Amex.

Having endured a difficult loan spell at Norwich last season he held talks on his future with the since-sacked Blues boss Thomas Tuchel, who allowed him to leave after Potter had argued the move was right for him.

Nixon writes in The Sun: “He told pals he only chose the Seagulls because of the way Potter plays.”

All of the key figures involved have now switched between the two clubs, as less than a week after the 21-year-old agreed to move to the south coast his former boss Tuchel was sacked by Todd Boehly following the 1-0 Champions League defeat at Dynamo Zagreb.

Potter immediately became the favourite to replace him and on 8 September he was confirmed on a five-year contract, leaving Gilmour in the wilderness.

Sold out

The ex-Chelsea player could be forgiven for not seeing this situation coming because even by the Roman Abramovich-era standards he would have been used to the departure of Tuchel was a surprise.

Having spent more than any other side in the world this summer, and made the German central to that process, few would have thought the new American chairman would then get rid of him just seven games into the season.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was personally reassured by the owners that he was a club signing rather than just a Tuchel signing, having been left in a similar situation after playing less than an hour in Zagreb upon reunion with his former Dortmund boss.

Brighton chairman Tony Bloom will need to do something similar for Gilmour to reassure the midfielder that he is not going to be lost in the transition.

Levi Colwill, on loan at the Amex from Stamford Bridge but yet to see much game time will also be wondering how the changes affect his season and his future back in London, while Marc Cucurella who left under somewhat of a cloud after pushing for what ended up being a £62million move to Chelsea has now seen the boss he spurned take charge again.

Brighton had of course been in better form than Chelsea, sitting fourth in the Premier League table, thanks to the success of Potter which drew attention to him in the first place.

How either club’s fortunes are now affected will be interesting and could leave Gilmour wishing he had stayed put.

Nottingham Forest’s Steve Cooper has been heavily linked to filling the vacancy, but amid major upheaval the Seagulls fans and players will hope for as much continuity as possible with the new appointment after reaching new heights under the now-departed Potter.

In other Brighton news, Zak Sturge is another figure who made the switch between these two clubs this summer.