Wolves have equalled the record this season for the fewest number of players used in a Premier League campaign, but Nuno Espirito Santo believes this is a credit to the members of his first-team squad as well as his medical staff.
By using just 19 players, only this current Wolves side and the Liverpool team of 1995/96 have used fewer than 20 different players in a single Premier League season.
However, Nuno could take Wolves’ total up to 20 if he decides to give goalkeeper Will Norris his top-flight debut – something the head coach has spoken about doing in the final two matches of the season but is yet to make a final decision on.
On the work of his fitness staff
“They’ve been a massive help since the beginning. It’s about each and every one of us giving the best of our own abilities but our medical staff are fantastic.
“But I insist the credit goes to the players. They are the ones who commit themselves to all the things they are recommended to do and then things will be better for them.
“It’s about the belief that you have to respect your body and treat it well because it is your tool. It is what you work on so respect yourself – rest well, eat well and then work well. Follow the advice of the medical team and the coaches but the credit goes to the player.
“If they are not willing to do that then they will have problems. There are no great secrets – do you see any magic powders around? There is no such thing, it’s commitment.
On having almost 99 per cent player availability
“The credit is for the players – after that it’s luck. We have had 12 moments where the doctor has had to go and assist a player because of a direct knock on the head.
“Fortunately, it’s not been serious, cuts and knocks, things like that. You cannot avoid it, you just hope it doesn’t happen to you.”
On Will Norris’ game time
“It is something that I still want to try and make possible, but no decision has been made yet.
“It’s not a reward, it’s something with a small squad that we have, I think everybody has contributed a lot for all the improvement that they’ve given. Not only those that start the game but everybody. So, I think it will be fair, but let’s see and wait.”
On summer signings
“The moment will come to make decisions but today is not the moment. We don't want to speak or think about it now. We still have two games to go.
“All these things we will have time to think about them.”
On what he requires from his players
“The more important aspect is what you have before, the squad and the spirit you have and ethic of work. Someone who comes then finds a routine and philosophy and just has to get along. This is the best way.
“It doesn't have anything to do with money. I never saw a £20 note running on the pitch.
“It is about the way we work and the way the players commit themselves.”
On squad improvements
“Since day one everyone here has competed for the whole process of the team and I still believe we can improve. It is an idea, we work this way and it is our model of our squad and training.
“We have a small squad, but everybody has contributed a lot. The idea is always to improve the player.
“I think we are doing well, not all the players that come have to have immediate success or reach their highest point, but a lot of us will become better with time, with the trust and confidence to improve.”