Lage | On stoppage-hit victory, showing consistency and midfield goals

Bruno Lage felt Wolves took the advantages from several interruptions to their clash with Brentford as his side were able to claim all three points on the road.

After a stoppage-hit first-half in west London, Wolves put themselves in front thanks to Joao Moutinho’s curling effort, while Ruben Neves’ strike got Lage’s men back on top having seen the hosts level. But the head coach was pleased with the consistency and personality his players have been showing to make it four wins from four to kick off the new year.

On continuing the winning start to 2022

“It is a very good start to the year. Three wins in the Premier League and one win in the cup, and we came with the right mentality to come here.

“We know what happened a few days ago with Man United, they play very well, they’re a strong team to play at home because they play very hard, and we did it. Three points, good goals, I felt we controlled the game with the ball, and that’s why I’m happy with my boys.

“It was a long day. Everything happened today. It was strange things, but the most important was that we come with personality, we come with ambition and we came with the consistency that we have been doing this month.

“It’s not just consistency with the points, it’s consistency with the way we play. We came here to play in a different way than the way we played against Crystal Palace or Norwich, so that’s the solid things I want to see in the games that they have been showing me in training.”

On the longest game of the season

“It was a strange first-half, too many stops, but I think we started the second-half very well. We were the better team, we scored early, we controlled the game, but they come strong, because they have that energy that they bring from the stands and the supporters, and they scored from a set-piece.

“They are very good with the set-pieces, but we then had the energy to come again and to score, but we had to stay calm and create the chances.

“Then Adama scored, and he would’ve deserved that goal, because he worked very hard. But most important was the teamwork. The team worked hard and they deserved these points.”

On using the breaks to his advantage

“It was about trying to understand what happened, trying to find the man controlling the drone, and then we came inside and talked a little bit about the game.

“Sometimes we don’t have the time within the game to talk about it, but we talked a little bit. We were losing the moment of the pressure and the midfield were playing a little bit free, so we changed the way we press, and that was it.

“It was trying to keep the same mentality, try to say to the players to keep their heads in the game, and I think that happened very well, especially at half-time, because we came in the second-half with that will to win the game.”

On two goals of real quality

“I said at the beginning of the year that the goals would come because we are working very hard, and we have to understand what kind of players we have.

“We cannot be crossing the balls high, especially against Brentford, they are very good defending the crosses, so we need to understand the way we can score goals with our profiles, so I was very happy.

“The first goal was very good and the second one was the same. It’s teamwork. The way we scored the first goal, I think we touched 14 times the ball before scoring, so we found the right touches and the right spaces.”

On Traore’s impact

“I’m very happy with him and he’s also very happy with us. He played 25 minutes and he brings a lot of energy, scored a third goal for one more time to help finish the game, and you see the way he celebrates.

“He comes to me and we had a hug between us and I’m very happy with him.”

On Neves’ improvements

“He’s improving his game, especially the way we come from the back with a lot of pressure. It’s very hard to mark Ruben, and he understands that part of his game.

“Also, his defensive part is improving and it depends on him how good he can be. I say to him every day that he needs to keep working on his game. Depending on the game he needs to show his consistency because people want to see him there every time – not just being there in one game and in the next he disappears.

“That’s the mentality I want from all of the players because for their careers, I want this consistency because all my players have a lot of potential.”

On Gomes’ red being rescinded

“I didn’t see the image and it was very strange. When I saw the red card, I was preparing to put Adama in the game, and I started to think what I needed to do.

“Maybe put Max on the left, Leander at centre-back, how to close the pressure, how to hold on, but I didn’t think too much about the red card and afterwards they changed the decision with VAR.”