Boss Steve Kean hopes Mauro Formica can make an impact for Blackburn this season after seeing the Argentinian grab the first goal in their 3-0 win over Kitchee on Saturday
Formica headed home Brett Emerton's cross after 34 minutes at Hong Kong Stadium before second-half efforts from David Dunn and Nick Blackburn sealed third place in the Barclays Asia Trophy.
"When he first came to the club it was difficult because he had to change not only to the method of training at the club but also the intensity of the league," said Kean.
"Even Michel Salgado's been quoted in the past that to change from a foreign league to the intensity of the Premier League is very, very tough, it even took Michel three or four months.
"For Mauro and Ruben Rochina, I think they've adjusted to the intensity, they're working really well and it's like getting two new players because they never featured too much in the first-team last year.
"They're certainly showing signs they're well up to speed and that can only be good for everybody."
Dunn echoed Kean's assessment of Formica, adding that he is hopeful the club's youth policy can pay dividends this season.
"Mauro, he came in last year and by his own standard was a little bit off the pace but he's come back in this year and he looks a totally different player," he said.
"He's obviously worked very hard on his fitness over the summer, which is a credit to him.
"Nick Blackburn is another young player that's coming through, we're very lucky at the club to have a good crop of young players coming through. Unfortunately Phil Jones left but he's one of many so hopefully they can step up to the plate."
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