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‘Pereyra hasn’t needed time like Pogba to settle’

Troy Deeney feels Roberto Pereyra deserves credit for hitting the ground running and smoothly acclimatising to life in England.

The playmaker swapped life in Turin and a career at arguably the biggest club in Italy for a five-year contract at Watford this summer. There has, according to reports, been no trace of arrogance or aloofness from the Argentine who played in the Champions League final the season before last. He’s fitted into the increasing South American feel at the club in much the same way his Maserati has taken up residence in the club’s training ground car park that doubles up as a high-performance car showroom.

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Picture by Franziska Empl

“You just look at Roberto’s attitude to it all,” said Deeney in his programme notes for the game against Stoke. “It’s not just the quality on the ball, it’s the covering back across the hard yards. People are talking about giving Paul Pogba time to settle back into the Premier League at Man United. Well Pereyra came from the same club at the same time, so for me he deserves a lot of respect for how he’s gone about setting in.”

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Picture by Franziska Empl

Pereyra, 25, brought his son to the home game with Hull City but packed him off back to South America soon after before the harsh British winter sets in.

“I have a little son and he returned to Argentina because it’s too cold in England,” he said in an interview with Football Italia. “I’ll see him again at New Year’s.”

Picture by Franziska Empl
Picture by Franziska Empl

Pereyra has scored twice, registered an assist, created 14 chances for his teammates and has a team-high passing accuracy of 83 per cent. On the evidence of the game against Stoke he could do with a few sessions in the gym but he’s already made one more start than he did in the whole of last season.

“We are very happy with him,” sporting director Luke Dowling told Calciomercato. “He is getting used to a very physical league. It was a great buy for us, we are satisfied.”