Nuno Espirito Santo praised the efforts of Chorley as the National League North side pushed his Wolves team all the way in their Emirates FA Cup fourth round tie.
Vitinha’s stunning first-half strike from long-range was the only thing to separate the two teams who sit six divisions apart in the football pyramid, by the Wolves head coach understood that getting into the next round of the competition was all that mattered following difficult conditions in Lancashire.
On overcoming a determined Chorley
“It was a very tough test. A lot of credit to Chorley because they are in a lower division but they are very organised, and they made things difficult for us. It was a good strike by Vitor to open the game, and in the end, we hard to work hard to sustain the result.
“It was tough. Chorley did well, they were well organised and moved the ball faster, but the boys stuck together and a win is a win.
“We knew they were going to be tough. I think we started well, with good possession and creating, but we had the advantage of a beautiful goal from Vitor, it was a fantastic strike, and in the end of the game we had to hold on because Chorley created a lot of problems for us.
“They pushed us against the ropes with long balls and they have a good striker who wins a lot of balls, so it was tough, but what was most important from everybody was that we’re into the next round.”
On adapting to conditions
“The pitch was difficult, but the boys adapted well. It was difficult to keep possession and judge the speed of the ball, but we adapted.
“We had to adapt to all the circumstances. Football is not only the Premier League, football is the lower divisions that we respect. I’ve been there, as have many of us in this team, so we respect a lot.
“We’ve come here and been well received by the chairman and by everybody, so this is the cup. I want to congratulate Chorley because besides being in a lower division, they are a very organised team.”
On a disappointing second-half performance
“We didn’t play well; not fast, not good. In the second-half we almost didn’t break Chorley, so I was a little bit disappointed on that, but I realise how hard the conditions were.
“Everybody wanted to go through. That’s what was important for us, because the perfect scenario was built for something to happen. But it’s the cup, we respect this competition a lot, and we want to proceed.
“The priority is game by game. We have to improve from the last performances, and even from today we have a lot of improvements in front of us.”
On Vitinha’s first goal for Wolves
“It was good for him and for us because when you put a player on the pitch, it’s because you trust him.
“He’s a young boy, he has talent, he’s adapting to English football and many things of his game need and require a fast adaptation because he has less time on the ball and he has to decide better, but I’m happy for him.
“I don’t think it was a goalkeeper mistake. When I was a goalkeeper it was difficult, but now is even more difficult because of the balls. As time goes by, they make the balls easier for striking and more difficult for stopping. Each time they are lighter.
“I think the deflection or the deviation of the ball caused problems for the Chorley goalkeeper, no doubts about it.”
On getting through to the next round
“This competition is huge for us. The next game is going to be at home, and for sure, it’s going to be a tough opponent, but now we need to focus on the Premier League.
“I have no preference on our opponent, getting through was important, and now let’s prepare well for the game in the Premier League.”