I want to preface this by saying that if we believed everything Jose Mourinho said, we’d be living in an insane, upside down world. So what can we take away from his remark to Chelsea TV that Pedro was “not quite Maradona, but close” in his English Premier League debut vs. West Brom?
Well, we know he’s not Maradona. I’d be surprised if the two have ever been mentioned in the same sentence before to be completely honest. Mourinho is one for exaggeration – keying in on his new signing’s stellar debut definitely hides the fact that his side has had a rough go of it in the opening weeks of their title defense – but he wasn’t lying when he said that Pedro is a “very good player.” “There is always a question mark because of how many top players come to England and don’t perform immediately” (ahem, Cesc), he continued, and despite the fact that Pedro is no Maradona, he is a special player who is poised to be a vital asset for the Blues.
Over 83 minutes of action, Pedro produced a complete performance: 88 percent pass completion, three chances created, two tackles won, three fouls awarded, one assist, and one goal.
He was elated after the 3-2 win, and posted this thank you to his supporters:
Over the course of his past three campaigns with Barcelona, Pedro scored 32 goals across all competitions. Twenty of his 35 league appearances came off the bench. To put this in context, Oscar and Willian only managed to net a combined 27 as regular starters for Mourinho. Whether or not Pedro’s introduction is a terrifying prospect for opponents is yet to be seen, but he does seem more than capable of providing clinical goalscoring abilities (among other things) for the London side.
Even Chelsea haters and madridistas like myself can’t help but feel a little bit pleased for him. He’s a fantastic player who will hopefully get the minutes he deserves in the EPL this season.