Bruno Lage admits he had a “good feeling” from the first minute at Old Trafford, on a night his team performed admirable to secure an historic victory.
Wolves started on the front foot, created chances aplenty, and were finally rewarded when Joao Moutinho fired home to earn the club their first win at Old Trafford since 1980. However, the performance was a team one, Lage’s men pulled off his game plan to a tee, and the head coach paid tribute to his players during his post-match media duties.
On a well-deserved win
“It’s one more victory. It’s a lovely stadium, a place with a lot of history, but the most important thing is the way we played this game against this team. One more time, we prepared very well for the game, I gave a lot of confidence to my players to come to play in our way.
“First-half I think it was very good, we controlled everything and created a lot of chances, but we didn’t score. Second-half they adapted, changed their system, and also us. After, we changed some guys and the guys who came inside helped us to win this game. Even now, three points, one goal, we had more chances than goals, so we need to continue to work, every time it’s like that.”
On always believing the goal would come
“There was a good feeling. Since the first minute we had a good feeling. Just not about the victory and three points, I think it was about the game we did. That’s the most important thing. That’s the way we want to play, we prepared very well for the game.
“Every time, I’m positive. Every time I come to try to win the games, and this is football. They had one good chance for Bruno, also us for Saiss. I’m a positive person. We won, it’s good for us, first time Wolves won here in a long time, and now we move on.
“When we had the ball, we were confident with the ball. We deserve this victory for Wolves, for the fans, and for the players because they are working hard to play this way.”
Starting 2022 the 𝗿𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 way! 😁 pic.twitter.com/eVLPGoA5Cm— Wolves (@Wolves) January 3, 2022
On the game plan
“The most important thing for us is to see where the full-backs are, which position they start. It’s to find the spaces, when they are defending or attacking. If you look at the first-half, when they were defending, they tried to block, and the space was outside. Semedo and Marcal in the first-half had a lot of the ball and the boys found the spaces.
“Podence and Trincao understand if the full-backs are in front of them, or if they go, you control the space inside. It was so important, we worked hard, the players understood the plan and I think we deserved the three points.”
On defending as a team
“Credit for everyone. We press in one way, they changed when they had the ball, we changed our way to press, so it’s so important for the guys up front and today Raul, Trincao and Podence pressed.
“It’s so important the way we start from the back with our goalkeeper. Everyone is important, we play as a team, one more clean sheet for everyone, we created a lot of chances – it’s three points, tomorrow a day off, then everyone has to come with a big ambition to continue to improve.”
On the past two weeks
“We were creative. The last two weeks were hard, we didn’t have too many players. Fabio was out, Raul was out, Adama was out – we needed to adapt, we worked little things that happened against Crystal Palace and Norwich to try to improve and get everyone fit and ready to play.
“I talked to Leander before the game and he said he can play just ten minutes, so I said he comes with us and for sure he’d play ten minutes. He played five and did well. In this period, if we have players out, we need to understand we work little things and work individually.”