Nuno Espirito Santo has described his joy at helping young players develop ahead of the latest Premier League clash at Molineux, when Wolves face Chelsea on Tuesday evening.
The head coach will be hoping his side can bounce back against the Blues following Saturday’s defeat to Aston Villa, but Nuno was boosted by the performances of two of his youngest stars, Fabio Silva and Pedro Neto at the weekend, and explained that it will take hard work and patience to get the best out of the young talent the club has in its ranks.
On facing Chelsea tomorrow night
“A very good team, a talented squad, many, many good players, some that they already had and some that they bought, and Frank is doing a very good job. It’s a very tough match tomorrow.
“All the squads in the Premier League are strong, honestly. It’s the best competition involving the best players and the best squads. I truly believe in the Premier League, there is no squad who you can underestimate.
“It was a tough game for us [last season], I think we didn’t play well and I recall that Chelsea played a good game, created a lot of problems for us and it was a heavy result.
“But the reference is not about last season, it’s about what Chelsea is now, how they performed last week and the previous games, this is what we analyse carefully because it’s about the momentum that the teams are on.”
He must be ready to believe, he must be ready to wait for the right moments, he must be ready when the moments don’t come to engage and go over and over again, because this is the only way.
On Silva’s positive performance on Saturday
“We already have a good player on our hands, he’s a very young boy, but he’s full of talent, who will improve, for sure.
“If you want to progress a player and keep improving and building your player, the best way is for him to have minutes in the competition.
“It’s good for him, it’s useful, and I think he did a good game, he worked well and he’s knowing his teammates better, his teammates are recognising his qualities and it’s up to us to decide. But it’s always about helping the player.
“At his age, the last thing he can think about is the goals, scoring, and not to be obsessed about that, but take up good positions, stick to your tasks, progress in the game, linking, doing defensive tasks and then the final touch will be there. It’s something that we have to improve and work on, but I’m happy with him.”
On helping young players to develop
“I enjoy my work a lot, but I really enjoy being on the training ground, and think it’s a job of every manager and every technical staff to improve players and build players so they can become better.
“I enjoy it, but it’s both ways – the credit must go to the player, and he must be ready to believe, he must be ready to wait for the right moments, he must be ready when the moments don’t come to engage again on a training session and go over and over again, because this is the only way – hard work.
“But we’re a young squad, we’ve been a young squad for a while now, and it’s all about progressing players, improving them, so they can produce better options for the team.
“My job is to build complicities; it’s not about one player by himself, it’s not about having the best player, it’s about having the best attack, the best midfield, the best shape in defence. It’s all about that.”
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On being patent
“In football, patience doesn’t exist too much, so we are aware of that, but by my own idea, pressure and rushing things will only disturb you.
“You must keep your calm, keep working on a daily basis, and try to get away from all the outside expectations and only focus on yourself. For me, it’s very easy, because I only focus on what I can control.”
On the busy fixture schedule
“It’s very hard, very demanding, and at the same time challenging. But something that we did many times, especially during the last season – only a couple of days between matches.
“It’s hard to do a proper recovery, while at the same time preparing for the next game like you usually would on the training ground. You cannot put the intensity on the actions that you want, so it’s all about trying to recover and then a good meeting using images and try to use all the resources that you can to give info to the players.
“We knew that this is eventually going to happen, but it’s very demanding on all the squads. A short pre-season, a lot of international breaks and now the month of December is crazy for everybody, and it’s very demanding on the players and the managers of the Premier League.”