CHELSEA manager Mauricio Pochettino hailed the impact of Mykhailo Mudryk and Armando Broja last night after their goals sealed a 2-0 Premier League win over Fulham, who brought on Alex Iwobi as a substitute.
Mudryk struck his first-ever Chelsea goal in the 18th minute and Broja, who recently returned from a long lay-off, added the second a minute later as the Blues secured only their second Premier League win of the season and the first in four matches in the competition.
“We got what we deserved,” Pochettino said during his post-match interview.
“The first half we were much better than Fulham. The second half we were in control.
“I’m so happy because the players needed this victory and so did the fans. We now have two victories in less than one week. We needed to feel the taste of victory, and another clean sheet also.
“Now we have won two games we need to keep calm and keep building the belief and the confidence. We have had many negative circumstances with so many players not fit, but the most important thing is belief and the team believe in what we are doing.”
Chelsea previously went three games without a win in the Premier League, losing two and drawing one, but have now won matches two back to back, starting with last week’s 1-0 Carabao Cup victory over Brighton.
Pochettino is relieved that his side have found the winning formula and reserved special praise for last night’s scorers.
“For Mischa he scored his first goal in the Premier League, and for Armando after a long period out he scored again. I’m so happy for them, they deserve it,” the former Tottenham Hotspur manager added.
“We need to understand that young people need time and need to settle. It’s about adaptation. It’s a big change when Mudryk arrived here and when you arrive at a team, it’s not easy to settle in a team that isn’t solid. He wasn’t the cherry on the cake, they needed to add something to the team.
“It’s about time, having patience, trusting these young talented players, building confidence. It’s a big job, step by step. Sometimes people don’t have the patience but for us it’s about having the patience. Even when we weren’t winning, we were calm, stayed positive, had the belief.”
Mudryk was withdrawn at half-time and Pochettino provided an update on the Ukrainian’s injury, saying: “He felt something in his quad which we need to assess. He didn’t feel comfortable to keep playing. We hope it’s not a big issue, we hope it’s nothing big and he can be available for Saturday.”
Iwobi, who joined Fulham from Everton on September 1, replaced Harry Wilson nine minutes into the second half, while his Super Eagles teammate Calvin Bassey was an unused substitute.