Marco Silva says Jean Michael Seri has impressed him during pre-season and believes Fulham’s forgotten midfielder could play a key role in their Championship campaign.

The Ivorian international was a surprise selection in Silva’s starting line-up as the Portuguese head coach recorded a resounding first Fulham win and Seri delivered a strong showing in a deep-lying midfield role. The former Nice midfielder was expected to leave Craven Cottage before the end of the summer transfer window but Silva suggested that he could become a fixture in the Fulham side.

“A new manager came, of course, and in pre-season he did really well. Mika didn’t do so many games in recent seasons. [No] ninety minutes week in, week out and when that happens you are not used to playing with the intensity I want.

But he worked hard in the last week and that’s why I started with him – he deserved it. Now he needs more games to get him in the best possible condition. I’m not in the best position to talk about what happened in the past but Mika is getting his chance and if he does well the fans will be happy.”