Potter admits injuries have increased Chelsea’s need for a fast transfer business

Potter admits injuries have increased Chelsea’s need for a fast transfer business

Chelsea loanee Joao Felix

Chelsea are already interested in new loan signing Joao Felix, but Graham Potter suggested the club’s injury crisis is “sharpening focus” on the transfer market.

The Blues have been big movers of the January window, signing Benoit Badiashile, David Datro Fofana and Andrey Santos on permanent deals.

Potter could also include Portugal forward Joao Felix on Wednesday as he agreed a temporary move until the end of the season from Atletico Madrid.

His arrival improves a Chelsea side who are struggling to 10th in the Premier League, although Potter believes the amount of injuries he has faced “could distort the picture a bit”.

“If we have those people back I think the picture changes, I absolutely do,” he said. “I guess we’re not as far apart as we think from the outside.”

Potter is unsure whether Joao Felix will be able to make his debut against Fulham on Thursday as Chelsea await his registration, but Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will return after missing the previous game against Manchester City.

There has been less positive news about Christian Pulisic, who could be out for months, while Raheem Sterling is still being evaluated. Ben Chilwell remains out, and Reece James and N’Golo Kante are only now training alone.

“We’ve known [the Joao Felix deal] for a long time; these things don’t happen quickly,” said Potter. “Obviously the injury maybe sharpened focus a little bit.”

Joao Felix disappointed after his record-breaking move to Atleti, but Potter is not keen on his Spain career, which is set to be extended after the former Benfica man signed an extension at the same time as joining Chelsea.

The Chelsea coach’s only assessment is that Joao Felix is a “quality player” who “can make a difference in the final third”.

That’s been a problem under Potter, with Chelsea scoring just 20 league goals so far this season. His Brighton and Hove Albion team also have a reputation for struggling offensively.

However, Joao Felix himself was not expected to change the team’s fortunes, as Potter added: “My thought is that you have to fix the team; not just one person to solve your problems.”

Perhaps further signings can help the new guy impact changes, with Chelsea – heavily linked with Benfica’s Enzo Fernandez – not necessarily doing so in the transfer market.

“There is time,” said Potter. “Whether we will find the right players or not is another thing.”

He added: “We’re happy with what we’ve done so far, but we’ll keep trying to improve the team.”

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