“He is very comfortable with the ball” – Legendary Arsenal player is helping coach Chelsea talent as he breaks into Ligue 1 side

Chelsea’s loans this season have been a disaster in the main, and there’s no better example than Andrey Santos.

The Brazilian was a rising star when he arrived, coming off the crest of a wave of playing a load in Brazil’s second tier and then excelling for his national youth sides.

But that progress was suddenly stymied by his move to Nottingham Forest on loan, where he spent 6 months on the bench. He was moved to Strasbourg in January, to try and solve the problem, but it had started to look like nothing was going to change. His first months after January have seen him barely feature, but finally the last few games have seen him starting to earn some minutes.

Patrick Vieira, the Strasbourg manager, has explained why he didn’t use Santos much to start with, and how impressed he’s been since he started giving him a chance:

“Andrey needed a little time to adapt. When he has had the opportunity to play, it has gone very well,” the coach explained.

“In terms of releasing the ball, he brings us a sense of simplicity which allows us to create chances. He is very comfortable with the ball at his feet.”

Santos has started his team’s last two games and they won both. We expect him to start on Sunday too, given that and given Vieira’s comments.

There are just 7 Ligue 1 games left this season, but if the 19 year old plays them all that’s still a decent return. His team are by no means out of the relegation fight just yet, so he won’t be playing just for the sake of developing BlueCo players. But his coach’s words indicate he’s playing on merit, and we’re really interested to see if he racks up a third consecutive start at the weekend when the Alsatians play Toulouse.

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