You are here: HomeSports2015 10 17Article 388313

Sports News of Saturday, 17 October 2015


Mourinho predicts Rahman could become EPL's best defender

Baba Rahman Baba Rahman

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has tipped Ghana defender Baba Rahman to follow in the footsteps of Portugal legend Ricardo Carvalho, who experienced hard start to life in the English top-flight.

The 21-year-old left-back is following similar issues adapting to the Premier League as the former Blues ace and Portuguese gaffer has likened his experience to that of his former player.

The former Portugal centre-back joined his countryman Mourinho from FC Porto at the club in 2004, winning two Premier League titles alongside two domestic trophies in a six-season spell at Stamford Bridge.

Rahman was signed from Augsburg this summer, but the Chelsea boss hinted that he prefers playing either Cesar Azpilicueta or Kurt Zouma instead of the youngster.

Mourinho said like Carvalho, Baba is taking time to adapt to the style of the Premier League and his lack of pre-season experience with the title-holders has affected the former Asante Kotoko defender.

“But it’s not a problem of size, it’s a problem of experience and being adapted to the Premier League. The fact that he came to us in the last days of the market took from him the possibility to work in pre-season,” he said in a pre-match briefing.

He insisted on the quality of the Black Stars lateral defender: “Baba is very good with the ball and very fast but he’s learning how to play his game and do we play, how do we defend. He’s a good player for sure, and we trust him.”

“I go back to one of the best defenders the Premier League had in Ricardo Carvalho. He was in big trouble for three, four, five months and was saying he couldn’t adapt to the Premier League, the way attacking players were playing he had to adapt and learn how to use his position and body,” he added.

“He was a super player and it was hard for him for three or four months so it depends on the characteristics of the players.”