JAMES HALLETT REVIEWS WHAT WE LEARNED FROM SPURS V WOLVES
We travelled to North London for our third Premier League outing looking for three valuable points. Here’s what we learnt.
1. INCREDIBLE RECRUITMENT
All three summer signings started this game and impressed. Nathan Collins was one of our standout players and helped the defence out massively. Gonçalo Guedes was handed his debut last week Vs Fulham but started his first game in old gold this morning. He created chances and his runs were what made our first half so impressive. Finally, our record signing, Matheus Nunes, was put straight into the starting line-up following his transfer from Sporting Lisbon. He arguably had our best chance of the match, nearly converting a glancing header into the bottom left of the Spurs net. I thought his dribbling was superb and did create a lot of problems for the Spurs midfield and defence. Credit does have to go to our recruitment team, who have done an excellent job finding players to create more chances and strengthen the back line.
2. NEED OF A STRIKER
One issue that was apparent during this match was the lack of a clinical striker. Daniel Podence started the game in a false nine position which in my opinion didn’t work. Raúl was subbed on in the 59th minute and didn’t have a bad game. Although he didn’t even have a shot, he did have a good run at goal that couldn’t be converted. The need of a striker is very clear, especially after this game. Manager, Bruno Lage, has made it clear in previous interviews about his desire for a new striker. The goals aren’t coming, and time is running out in the transfer window.
3. WONDERKID FROM PORTO
One player’s performance that shouldn’t go amiss was our captain, Ruben Neves. His long shots looked to be consistent, created plenty of opportunities and his passing never fails to impress. Getting his contract tied down should be a priority on Jeff Shi’s to-do list as we should be building this squad around him.
4. CONSISTENCY IS KEY
During the first half Wolves dominated the game. We created all the chances, dominated possession, and had all the confidence. Whatever Antonio Conte told the Tottenham players at halftime must have had an effect as Spurs looked the more dominant team throughout large portions of the second half. Wolves have had this problem during our first two games as well as this one. Our great .openings must stay consistent throughout matches in the future. Bruno Lage must find a way to keep players engaged and switched on
5. POSITIVE FORMATION
Wolves in the past have been accustomed to a back 5 formations in the past, but this season we have tried adjusting to a back 4. Today’s game saw a bit of a roadblock in progress. For lots of the game Neto looked as if he was playing like a wing-back with Rayan Aït-Nouri on the other side. The three centre backs consisted of Kilman, Collins and Jonny. This worked defensively, as we found out last year, but damages the attacking output due to less players in the box and getting forward. This almost links back to our need of a clinical striker, which would allow us to play as a consistent back 4.
6. ageing like a fine wine
The last thing we learnt is that Moutinho’s still got it. After being injured during training and missing the first two games of the campaign, Joao made his first appearance of the season today and stood out as one of the best players on the pitch. He created the most chances of the match and a very respectable passing accuracy. The midfield of Joao, Ruben and Matheus looks to be up there with the very best in the league.
article by James Hallett
Hi i’m James. I’m a sixth form student with a passion for Wolves and sports journalism.