Former Chelsea striker Andriy Shevchenko has urged the club to give compatriot Mykhaylo Mudryk the time and patience he needs to succeed in west London.
The Ukraine international has struggled to assert himself in Graham Potter’s first team set-up following his big-money move from Shakhtar Donetsk in January.
Mudryk is yet to open his goalscoring account for Chelsea, although he has started just three of his six league appearances, averaging 45 minutes per game since his arrival.
Famed for his blistering speed and high-quality technical ability, Mudryk has yet to live up to his billing at Stamford Bridge, but Shevchenko believes the 22-year-old will deliver the goods in time.
“What worked for me in Milan and London was immersing myself in the culture, studying the language so I can communicate with my teammates,” Shevchenko said (via The Athletic).
“That will help him acclimatise quicker, which is important when you move to any country in the world. On the pitch, the club and the manager will provide him with everything he needs to raise his level.
“Chelsea have bought a talented player when he is very young, for the future. He’s just starting his path in a massive football career.
“But his first step has been the right step, coming to Chelsea. He’s part of an ambitious project. He’s in good hands.”
Mudryk is barely into his eight-and-a-half-year contract, but his astronomical price tag places an unwanted spotlight on his adaptation to Premier League football.
The Ukrainian only burst into the scene in January 2021 when he joined Shakhtar’s first team.
But his impressive performances mean he was not afforded enough time to morph into an established forward before being thrust into a club of Chelsea’s stature.
His gameplay may still be rusty, but he showed glimpses of what he is capable of on his debut in the goalless stalemate against Liverpool.
Earning his first goal contribution in the 3-1 success over Leicester City in his last game, albeit fortuitous, will be a huge boost for his confidence.
However, he was not helped by Potter after spending the entire 90 minutes of the subsequent 2-2 draw against Everton on the bench.
The international break could provide the pacy forward with a much-needed break from domestic football to rebuild his confidence.
He will get a chance to show his undeniable quality when Ukraine take on England in their European Championship qualifying game at Wembley Stadium on Sunday.
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