Every summer a handful of youngsters are made available by Monaco for Cercle Brugge to bring in on loan. This season, the side has brought in Félix Lemaréchal, a 20-year-old midfielder. Lemaréchal has had to bide his time for a starting space, but since starting the sides 2-0 win over Gent, he has caught the eye.
In the following game against KV Mechelen he picked up his first assist for the club, and has gone on to play the full 90 minutes in the sides last three matches against Anderlecht, Club Brugge and Eupen. In each of those games, FotMob have given the player ratings of 8, 7.5 and 7.7 out of 10. In his seven games, five of which have been starts, he is averaging an impressive 7.4 rating.
Cercle are using the young French midfielder as the player behind Kevin Denkey, the sides top scorer with 10 goals this season. This position appears to suit Lemaréchal, as he has the technical ability to operate in tight spaces and exploit what little space is afforded him by the opposition defensive midfielders and central defenders. He is showing great balance on the ball, as well as the desire to create chances for the rest of the team. One area of improvement may be in becoming a goal threat himself as well. He is also fitting into the sides pressing game well, with 49 recoveries in his seven games so far. He has also regained possession in the final third nine times, something that Cercle lead the league in.
Monaco will certainly be happy to see Lemaréchal getting game time and developing as time goes by. Cercle have been the surprise package of the season with their opening 15 games seeing them sitting in a lofty fourth place. They are also one of the most entertaining sides in the league, possessing plenty of youngsters like Lemaréchal. Perhaps due to naivety, or a lack of professional experience, the side have only drawn one game this season, with eight wins and six defeats.