João Félix had certainly imagined it very differently.
Barely 24 hours after the announcement of the spectacular loan from Atlético Madrid to Chelsea, the Portuguese made his debut for his new club. Coach Graham Potter sent his new attacking centerpiece into the City derby at Fulham FC early on – and saw him go after just 58 minutes with a dangling header.
A knee-high tackle on Kenny Tete ultimately left referee David Coote with no choice. The referee expelled the outrageously expensive loan player from the field with a direct red when the score was 1: 1 and thus laid the foundation for the Blues’ third consecutive bankruptcy (1: 2).
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Bitter, because indeed the debut of the new hope at Stamford Bridge went like clockwork.
Félix qualities immediately visible
Félix entered the game well, and after just over two minutes he created the first big chance for the Blues with a strong move down the right wing. The Portuguese didn’t need any warm-up time in the new environment, was immediately involved in combination play with his colleagues and was the best man on the pitch until his suspension. Félix had six shots on target and four assists – the two best.
João Félix receives a red card for foul on Kenny Tete
Photo credit: Getty Images
However, he will now have to wait a little longer for his next few minutes. A three-game ban is the FA’s verdict, which raises Felix’s price per league game by almost €100,000, from €523,809 to €611,111. Chelsea FC had the attacking man’s services cost eleven million euros at the end of the season, calculated long-term at almost two million euros a month, the most expensive loan deal in history soccer.
You could see Felix’s qualities and the impact on Blues play immediately, coach Potter said in the post-game press conference. It is therefore very “disappointing to lose him for three games”.
Felix is seen as a beacon of hope in South London. With him, it should be possible to save a sometimes failed season. Chelsea are only tenth in the Premier League after 18 matchdays, the gap to fourth place in Champions League qualification is already ten points and could even increase to 13 if Manchester United (currently fourth) play their match catch-up at Crystal Palace (18/01/2023). ) to win.
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A misery that inevitably means Potter has to worry about his job again after just 19 competitive games as Chelsea FC manager. Seven defeats in the last ten games are fundamentally threatening for football managers – especially for ambitious clubs like Chelsea FC.
It has long been speculated by the media that the former Brighton manager will leave soon. Oliver Glasner, coach of Europa League winners Eintracht Frankfurt, is currently expected to top the list of possible successors. According to information from the “BBC”, Potter still enjoys the trust of officials – the only question is how much longer.
Photo credit: Getty Images
Potter surprisingly took over the job from Thomas Tuchel in mid-September and started his tenure with an impressive nine-game unbeaten streak (five wins, four draws). Since then, however, the worm has been in it, which is why Félix joined the team in winter.
João Félix: The pressure is already noticeable
The career of the 23-year-old player, who once moved from Benfica to Atlético Madrid for the record sum of 127 million euros, had recently stalled in the Spanish capital. Under Diego Simeone, he has only started seven times in 15 league appearances this season (four goals, three assists).
In England, he now wants to pick up speed, recommend himself for a new club. Because even though Félix recently extended his contract with Atlético by one year until June 30, 2027 for accounting reasons, he is unlikely to appear for the Rojiblancos again – at least while Simeone is there. sportingly responsible.
If the striker proves himself at Stamford Bridge and both teams want to stay longer, the transfer fee should be completely renegotiated. Chelsea FC have no option to buy, Atlético have all the assets.
Much like coach Potter, Felix is under pressure from the start – which is impressively documented, not least by his over-motivated tackle against Tete.
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