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Potter delighted with Welbeck's impact

Head coach says striker has been a breath of fresh air around the squad.

By Bruce Talbot • 24 November 2020

By Paul Hazlewood
Danny Welbeck netted his first Albion goal on Saturday.

Graham Potter is delighted with the impact Danny Welbeck has made on and off the pitch.

And he believes the former England striker’s partnership with Neal Maupay could really benefit Albion going forward.

Welbeck, who celebrates his 30th birthday on Thursday, scored his first Albion goal in only his second start in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Aston Villa.

“Since he joined us he’s been like a breath of fresh air around the squad and the boys have really responded to him,” said Potter.

“He’s enjoying his football which is the most important thing. His ability as a player has never been in doubt and we’re enjoying having him here.”

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Extended PL Highlights: Aston Villa 1 Albion 2

Like team-mate Adam Lallana, Welbeck’s training schedule is closely monitored by Potter and his technical staff. “You have to find that balance, a bit like we have done with Adam. Danny is a top professional so he’s kept himself in great physical condition but you can’t do too much too soon. We’ve done a lot of work on team understanding since he’s been here and how we can get the most out of his ability and talent.”

There were signs at Villa Park that Welbeck is building a good understanding with Maupay, with one link up which led to Maupay being denied by Villa goalkeeper Emilio Martinez a taste of what they might achieve together.

“They contributed and combined very well, it was nice for them because they put a lot into the game,” said Potter. “There was Danny’s goal, a one-v-one which the keeper saved from Neal too. They ran and defended for each other.

“We haven’t had time to do much 11v11 stuff on the training pitch so I think they will get better and better. And we also have other good options in Aaron Connolly and Andi Zeqiri as well.”

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