New Swansea manager Carlos Carvalhal is confident his fellow Portuguese Renato Sanches can resurrect his career after failing to impress since his loan-move from Bayern Munich.
The 20-year-old midfielder who was named best young player at Euro 2016 has failed to score or provide an assist in 11 Swansea appearances.
Sanches has not started a game since November 29, when he was ridiculed for passing a ball into an advertising hoarding at Chelsea with no Swansea player in close attendance.
But Carvalhal believes Sanches, who cost Bayern 35 million euros when he joined them from Benfica after Portugal won Euro 2016, will prove himself at Swansea under his management.
“I think he (Sanches) needs confidence,” Carvalhal said, ahead of his Swansea bow at Watford on Saturday.
“It is easy to forget because he has played for Benfica and the Portuguese national team that he is still only a kid.
“He is still learning and I think he needs a role in the team.
“With time he will understand all the different roles the players have in the team.
“But he will be involved in the dynamic and, when he understands what we want, he will be a completely different player. We believe that.”
Carvalhal was appointed Swansea manager on Thursday, only four days after his two-and-a-half-year spell at Championship side Sheffield Wednesday came to an end.
He has inherited a side five points from safety after only one win in 12 Premier League games, and a swift upturn in results are needed if Swansea are to be playing top-flight football for an eighth successive season next term.
But Carvalhal has promised a positive approach ahead of meeting fellow Portuguese coach Marco Silva at Vicarage Road.
“Marco is a good coach and their assistant coach (Joao Pedro Sousa) is my big friend,” Carvalhal said. “He is from my city Braga and we played together.
“Watford are a very organised team but we will fight for the three points.
“It will be the same against every opponent because I’ve never played in my career to draw any game.
“I always try to win, even when I was a coach in the third division in Portugal and we played teams from the top division.
“It was the same at Sheffield Wednesday when we beat Newcastle and Arsenal in the Capital One Cup.”
Swansea were in complete disarray when losing 5-0 at Liverpool on Tuesday – the final game of Leon Britton’s two matches in caretaker charge following the sacking of Paul Clement.
But Carvalhal has preached the need for unity, saying: “Organisation is important and we must not be afraid to play.
“We have to enjoy it when we have the ball and be disciplined when we don’t have it.
“These are the things we must do urgently, so we can connect the 11 pieces into one and become bigger.”