Mykhailo Mudryk’s Chelsea debut assessed as Jurgen Klopp has hand forced in Liverpool vs Chelsea

Mykhailo Mudryk introduced himself to his new adoring Chelsea supporters on Saturday afternoon and Marc Cucurella has been speaking about the big-money signing after his debut

Marc Cucurella has been full of praise for Chelsea’s new signing Mykhailo Mudryk after his debut against Liverpool on Saturday afternoon.

The 22-year-old, who completed a £62million – with a further £26m to come with add-ons – move to Stamford Bridge last weekend, came on 55 minutes into the match at Anfield and immediately made an impact with his speed and directness on the left wing. It forced Jurgen Klopp to bring James Milner off for Trent Alexander-Arnold, with the Liverpool man really struggling against the speed of Mudryk.

It was no surprise Mudryk didn’t start the goalless draw at Anfield considering he hadn’t played any competitive football since November. However, in the 35-minute cameo, Mudryk showcased his talent and almost found the back of the net on his debut after taking on Milner and then Joe Gomez inside the Liverpool box, but he couldn’t guide it past Alisson.

One man that had a great view of Chelsea’s Ukrainian winger is Cucurella, who was playing at left-back behind Mudryk. The Spaniard, who was solid in defence on Saturday afternoon, is excited by what he’s seen from his new teammate so far and has heaped praise on the winger.

“He is very good, very fast, and he played really good after training for one or two days,” Cucurella told Chelsea’s official website. “I think the new players have a lot of energy to play for this club.”

Graham Potter was also very complimentary of what he saw from Mudryk. The under-fire Chelsea head coach was asked whether in hindsight the Ukraine international could have started the game, but he was quick to play that down.

“He’s not played since November, hasn’t had any game time, so it would have been a risk to play him from a start,” Potter explained. “It was more managing his minutes at the backend of the game. We thought it was the right time to bring him in.”

Potter added: “He was really good. He’s only been with us a couple of days and he’ll get better the more he is and the more we understand him and the more he understands us. But promising signs.

“He’s had two sessions with us but watching him at Shakhtar, seeing his quality there, he is dangerous in one-versus-one situations, in the final third he can make things happen, he’ll get supporters off their seats. Our job is to help him settle into the team, help him settle into the country and league, and gain an understanding of us and how we can help him.”

Chelsea now have a 12-day break until their next match, with next weekend being FA Cup fixtures. So Blues supporters will have to wait almost a fortnight to watch Mudryk in action again, but the Ukrainian will be in contention to start when Chelsea welcome Fulham to Stamford Bridge in the Premier League.

Another man who is in contention to introduce himself to the home Chelsea supporters on February 3 against Fulham is the club’s latest signing Noni Madueke.

The Blues confirmed the arrival of the 20-year-old on a long-term contract on Friday night, but not in time for the English winger to be registered for the trip to Anfield. However, he now has plenty of time to train with his new teammates before the side’s next competitive game at the start of next month.

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