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Joao Felix’s 58-minute Chelsea debut: Instant impact, foul magnet and a moment of madness

For 57 minutes, the situation had been going quite well. It was not building up to be a great debut, but considering that Joao Felix had just one training session to get to know his new Chelsea teammates, he had at least revitalised an offence that had recently appeared entirely devoid of ideas.Information Guide Nigeria

The 23-year-old, who joined Wednesday morning on loan from Atletico Madrid, then performed a moment of recklessness that may not be matched by any other Premier League player for the duration of the season.

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Felix’s expression was one of disbelief when David Coote waved a red card in his direction. It could not have been at the fact that he was being dismissed, given there is no clearer dismissal, but rather at the tackle he had just made.

Kenny Tete should consider himself extremely fortunate that he was able to continue playing after the Portuguese planted the studs of his right boot on the middle of the Fulham defender’s leg with sufficient force to cause damage. Even if the challenge was made out of enthusiasm to retrieve a loose ball rather than malice, it was a potential leg-breaker.

The Fulham crowd screamed “what a waste of money” after Felix was substituted 10 minutes after Kalidou Koulibaly had given Chelsea the equaliser.

Instead, they left Craven Cottage licking their wounds, analysing a third consecutive loss, six of the previous eight, and seven of the last 10 in all competitions.

Fulham has not defeated their rivals since March 2006. Prior to this victory, Fulham had not won since 1979, and Marco Silva’s squad is now six points ahead of a club that, as the Craven Cottage manager correctly acknowledged prior to kickoff, still has superior financial strength in the transfer market.NYSC portal

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Regardless of Chelsea’s goal and commitment to view Graham Potter’s appointment as part of a long-term project, this result increases the pressure on the manager.

Potter will have every right to cite circumstances beyond his control, including a devastated team. However, fit players should be simply superior to this. If the reaction of the away fans at the end of this game is any indication, the atmosphere against Crystal Palace on Sunday may easily become nasty.

Even though former Chelsea winger Willian scored the game’s first goal for Fulham, Felix’s arrival appeared to be helping matters before he was sent out. However, the patched-together lineup of the visitors appeared disjointed and clumsy at times.JAMB portal

Consider the following to put Chelsea’s injury woes in perspective: Felix became their 27th player used in the league this season, with one game remaining until they reach the halfway point. Last season, 26 players were featured throughout the full campaign.

It has been impossible for Potter to have a consistent team from one game to the next, and the impact of this cannot be understated.

Injuries have impacted every position, from goalkeeper Edouard Mendy to both first-choice fullbacks and centre back Wesley Fofana; midfielder N’Golo Kante has been sidelined since mid-August, while Raheem Sterling and Christian Pulisic have diminished the offensive possibilities.

Speaking to BT Sport about his decision to start Felix, Potter summed up the need for reinforcements. “Physically he is ok, obviously he is in adaptation time which is not optimal,” the head coach said. “But with the quality he has, we thought it was the right decision to put him in.”JAMB Result

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Emediong Ekpe

Emediong Ekpe is a graduate of English. A professional Sports journalist/analyst, and a spoken word artist. He is passionate about decimating information and putting smiles on people's faces via news writing.

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