Nuno Espirito Santo will consider past and future workloads of his players when selecting his team for Sunday’s trip to Tottenham Hotspur.
The head coach has welcomed defensive duo Willy Boly and Marcal back to training this week but remains conscious of the minutes many of his players have got through, and international responsibilities ahead of them. It’s a big week for Wolves, who play three times in the space of eight days, and patiently await the latest news Raul Jimenez, but regardless of the week’s outcome, Nuno has been proud of the way his group have remained united throughout.
On injury news from the camp
“We have some coming back, some have been able to join. Some are not inside because we have problems. It’s always the situation and it’s the end of the season, so we have to be very careful with our decisions, the way we prepare.
“Many of our squad have had a lot of games, and we have to realise some of our players still have to compete with their national teams. It’s been too much, let’s try to fix it. Having all the players available is something we didn’t have the luxury of this season.”
On Boly and Marcal returning
“Boly has joined the group, he’s working in a normal situation. He still has some individual issues to be able to go all the training sessions at the same level, but he’s really improved. Marcal joined us for a couple of days, he’s been out with a long injury, but is now getting back his fitness, but he’s totally recovered from his injury, so it’s good news.”
On Jimenez’s scan approaching
“We have to wait and be very patient. The 18th is a huge day for us to collect information, to make the right steps moving forward. We cannot look much further than that, we have to be very careful because he still has steps to take that will enable him to play.
“He’s still not involved in all the parts of the training session regarding contact, so we are very patient on that aspect. The 18th, let’s wait for the information from the specialist, and decide together what will be the best way. It would be a big joy, not only for him and his teammates, for the club, the city and in general for football, it would be a fantastic moment [when he returns].”
On the group rallying this season
“I’m very proud of the way we managed our own problems, very proud of the way we committed ourselves to solve and find solutions for our problems. Every day has been a challenge, to work as a unit, it’s not easy.
“I truly believe the relationship and the bond that the squad has among them is unique – it’s very special. It’s a big strength we have when we face problems, when things are not OK, we have this ability to regroup, refocus and go again, without conflict and selfishness.”
On Traore’s Brighton impact
“What we saw, honestly, against Brighton was the improvement of Adama, the ability to play in different spaces and do different things that he wasn’t doing before. We’re used to seeing Adama wide, one versus ones, but he was inside of the box, he made a fantastic combination and one touch finish, like a striker.
“This is what we want, trying to take Adama to different places in the pitch, to try to reproduce different actions, because his impact can be fantastic – he’s unique. What I saw there was a clear improvement in ability of Adama to play in different circumstances, and that’s a big step.”
On Tottenham under Mason
“We expect a very tough match. Tottenham’s squad is very good, full of quality, of course they changed manager and every manager has different ideas. We analyse Tottenham now, but the quality of the squad and players is going to be there. We want to compete – matching us against good teams is good for us.”