NEIL Lennon praised pocket rocket Rochinha for a stunning senior debut at Ipswich.

The on-loan Benfica midfielder produced a stunning first half performance, coming within inches of a goal-of-the-season contender after one mazy run.

And while he slowed down in the second half, Lennon believes the 19-year-old has now proved he can stand up to the rigours of Championship football.

“We’ve waited for him, been patient, but he was just outstanding against a very physical team,” he said of Rochinha, who had not made a single appearance before Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat.

“You always worry about players of that stature but he was an absolute giant for us, especially for one so young.

“He ran out of puff towards the end of the game in what was the first senior game in his career but I was very pleased with how he played, and there’s definitely more to come from him.”

Lennon was less forthcoming with praise for the player who replaced Rochinha late on at Portman Road, Rob Hall.

The young winger lost possession in the build up to the Tractor Boys’ winner, leaving his manager furious.

“We made a substitution and with his first touch he (Hall) gave the ball away and cost us a goal. That's unprofessional. He went on there to give us fresh legs and make us better,” the manager said.

“I am not singling him out but it is consistent with our away form. We are limping through it at the minute. We have to keep going.”

Lennon also has mixed emotions about Neil Danns’ international call-up for Guyana, which will see the midfielder make a 9,000 mile round trip on Sunday to play in friendlies against St Lucia and Grenada.

“He’ll travel half way across the world to play in a game and then back again, probably getting back on a Thursday afternoon or a Friday before a game,” the manager said, with a smirk. “No, I’m pleased for him. It’s a new one on me but he was talking about it this week – saying they were good enough to beat Northern Ireland, but we’ll see about that!”