Sheffield Wednesday: Almen Abdi’s delight at reuniting with old Watford FC pal Fernando Forestieri

Almen Abdi scored on his debut for Sheffield Wednesday against Port Vale

Almen Abdi scored on his debut for Sheffield Wednesday against Port Vale

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New Owls recruit Almen Abdi is happy to be reunited with former Watford teammate Fernando Forestieri.

Attacking midfielder Abdi admits Forestieri, who joined the Owls last August in a £3m deal, played a key role in luring him to Hillsborough.

Abdi, who spent four years at Vicarage Road, hitting 25 goals in 115 league appearances, told The Star: “I met Fernando the day before I signed for Wednesday and was very happy to see him. I always enjoyed playing with him and [Daniel] Pudil at Watford.

“Fernando is brilliant. When he’s confident, he is one of the best players in the Championship.

“I’m very happy he plays for us.

“I enjoyed playing with Fernando at Watford. We had a good partnership. Hopefully it will be the same at Wednesday.”

Fernando Forestieri closes in on goal in Sheffield Wednesday's 3-0 win over Port Vale

Fernando Forestieri closes in on goal in Sheffield Wednesday's 3-0 win over Port Vale

The Swiss international lined up alongside Forestieri in Wednesday’s final pre-season friendly against Port Vale. Forestieri still affectionately refers to Abdi as ‘The Professor’.

“It was back in the days when [Gianfranco] Zola was at Watford,” said Abdi, who marked his Owls debut with a goal in their 3-0 success over the Valiants. “For some reason one day he started to call me the ‘Professor’. Don’t ask me why.

“As you can imagine, there were some jokes in the team and Fernando still calls me ‘Prof’!

It is understood Wednesday spent in the region of £4million on Abdi but the 29-year-old is confident he can handle the pressure of his hefty price-tag.

“Obviously, I know I have to produce. That’s football, there is always pressure,” he said. “If you don’t play well, you are going to be on the bench. I’m 29 not 19 anymore so I can handle it.”

Watford defender Craig Cathcart admits he was “sad” to see Abdi leave the Hertfordshire club, saying: “Almen is a good character and is good to have around.”

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