Rochinha stars on his de­but

The Football League Paper - - INSIDE: - By Jamie Holt

GOOD things come in small packages ac­cord­ing to Neil Len­non af­ter be­ing im­pressed by diminu­tive mid­fielder Rochinha on his Bolton de­but.

Rochinha, who stands at just 5ft 7in, joined Wan­der­ers on loan from Ben­fica in Jan­uary and made his first ap­pear­ance dur­ing Tues­day night’s 1-0 loss to Ip­swich.

The Por­tuguese looked danger­ous through­out and al­most marked his de­but with a first-half goal – a mes­meris­ing run and neat one-two with Craig Davies end­ing with his shot rolling ag­o­nis­ingly wide.

Trot­ters boss Len­non is keen to ex­tend the 19-yearold’s stay at the Macron Sta­dium be­yond the end of the sea­son and be­lieves the young­ster was a class apart at Port­man Road.

“It was his first-ever game in English foot­ball and Rochinha was the out­stand­ing foot­baller on the pitch,” ex­plained Len­non.


“It is just a shame he missed that chance as it would have been one of the goals of the sea­son.

“He is only small and it has been dif­fi­cult to throw in kids un­der th­ese cir­cum­stances. He needed to get up to speed but it was a good op­por­tu­nity to play him and he was out­stand­ing.

“We are hop­ing we can bring him back to Bolton next sea­son.”

While Rochinha proves that his fu­ture is bright, Bolton’s re­cent re­sults have seen them be­come firmly en­trenched in the bot­tom half of the Cham­pi­onship ta­ble.

And Len­non has warned his un­der-per­form­ing play­ers to up their game or risk be­ing out on their ear.

“We have a prob­lem with the depth of the squad but I am ex­pect­ing more from the play­ers who have had the op­por­tu­nity to show what they can do,” added Len­non.

“They are not do­ing it, so they won’t play. I need my play­ers to step it up now.”

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