Graham Potter has praised Enzo Fernandez’s performance in Chelsea’s goalless draw against Fulham and believes he will keep getting better as he adapts to the team.
The Argentine completed a Premier League record £106million move to Stamford Bridge on deadline day, with the frantic nature of negotiations meaning he had to undergo a medical in Lisbon late on Tuesday night.
Fernandez did not touch down in London until midday on Wednesday and only had two training sessions with his new team-mates.
But that did not stop Potter from throwing his newest recruit straight into the starting XI for Friday night’s west London derby against Fulham and the 22-year-old gave an assured display.
Only two players had more touches of the ball than Fernandez’s 96, while he repeatedly broke up play – making a match-high six tackles – and fed his team-mates with some excellent and incisive forward passes.
Potter was delighted with what he saw from the new recruit – particularly after so little time on the training pitch – and is confident he will live up to his mammoth price tag.
Asked for his verdict on the former Benfica midfielder’s debut display, Potter told Sky Sports: ‘Really good considering he’s not been in the country very long and he doesn’t know us and we don’t know him so well in terms of working daily.
‘But I think you could see flashes of his quality, his personality is there, and he’ll get better and better the more we work with him.’
Asked if Fernandez was given a real taste of Premier League football in a combative contest, Potter continued in his post-match press conference: ‘Yeah it was. I thought he handled himself magnificently.
‘Tough game, but you could see his quality, you could see what he’ll bring to the team.
‘It’s not easy for him or for us because he hasn’t been with us that long, but I think you’ll see how good he can be and how much he can influence the team – so I’m excited with him.’
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