Jimenez | ‘It feels amazing to be back on the pitch’

Raul Jimenez is itching to get back on the Molineux pitch next weekend having recovered from his sickening head injury, which put him out of action for almost eight months last season – but could have been much worse.

The Mexican will be hoping to play a part in the final pre-season friendly as Celta Vigo are the visitors to the Black Country on Saturday and Molineux hosts an almost full stadium for the first time since March 2020, and the striker feels he is ready to go having had a positive few weeks as the squad took part in warm-weather training out in Marbella.

On returning to the pitch

“It feels amazing. After almost eight months, it feels like it was my first time there, out on the pitch, so I’m happy to be back here.

“It was really good. Even though they were not our supporters [at Crewe], they saw me, they showed me their respect and that they were happy too for me to be back on the pitch.”

On the atmosphere at Molineux

“It’s going to be really good. I’m looking forwards to it. I really want to be there, to enjoy the game, to enjoy the crowd, the people, and they are waiting for the game at the Molineux.

“It has been a long way since the last game there, so we are looking forwards to it.

“I heard it [the ‘Si Senor’ chant] sometimes in the last games, with small supporters, some small groups of supporters, but now I think it’s going to be much more people in the stadium, so it’s going to be really good.”

On recovering from his injury

“Where I am, I think fully recovered. It has been long, long way and a long, long time, but I think I’m fully recovered.

“The doctor said I’m good, but in every game, in every training session they ask me how I am, so after that, I feel that I’m ready to go.”

On warm-weather training in Spain

“It has been good here in Marbella. Warm, too hot sometimes to train, but it’s good to be disconnected from where we are the whole year and enjoy the sun while we can.

“It’s good to be out here in Spain, to recharge, to get energy and then when we are back in Wolverhampton, we can start.”

On the support he received

“I just want to thank them for all their support. It’s been a long time since I played my last game and they were there since the first minute.

“When it happened, I received a lot of messages, a lot of support, a lot of love. My house, in my post, I received a lot of cards, ‘recover soon’, ‘get well soon’, even at the training ground I received like a box of cards from people, from all over the world.

“I received messages from China, from Mexico, from New Zealand I think, then in the UK a lot of people have sent messages to me.

“Sometimes I go out to walk with my wife, my daughter and my dogs, and the people outside just wished me to be well soon, and that was fantastic.

“All that support, all that love that they gave to me, it feels really amazing.”