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Wolves set to unleash Joe Hodge vs Forest

Interim managers James Collins and Steve Davis look set to make a big decision ahead of Wolves‘ game against Nottingham Forest, with early reports claiming that Joe Hodge could be in line for a first start.

The 20-year-old made his first senior appearance for the Old Gold in last weekend’s 3-0 defeat against Chelsea and it seems as if he could be in line to start for the hugely important game on Saturday.

Football Insider claim that Hodge has impressed staff since joining the club from Manchester City last summer and could be set to feature from the off against Steve Cooper’s side at Molineux, with his relationship with U’23 boss Collins key to that decision.

Collins was full of praise for the young midfielder last season, saying:

“I can’t speak highly enough of Joe. He’s a manager’s dream in the fact that he’s got talent and ability, but also understands that to make it at the top level or any level of professional football you have to do the hard work and the hard yards.”

Hodge clearly has the ability but it seems to be his attitude both on and off the pitch which is winning him plaudits, as he won the Manchester City scholar of the year in 2020.

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Academy director Jason Wilcox said: “He is someone who maintains the highest of standards and his attitude and application has been fantastic both on and off the pitch.”

Perhaps if it weren’t for Wolves’ injury and suspension issues, Hodge wouldn’t be getting this chance, but Wolves desperately need to try something different if they are to turn their terrible start to the season around.

A return of one win and just three goals from the opening nine Premier League games highlights their current issues, and while Hodge is unlikely to amend that problem on his own, he can definitely offer something different in midfield.

With Ruben Neves back from suspension, he looks likely to feature at centre-back again in place of Nathan Collins, who serves the final game of his suspension after his red card against Manchester City.

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Hodge therefore will likely feature alongside Matheus Nunes and Joao Moutinho in midfield, for what already looks like a potential relegation six-pointer on Saturday, so it is definitely a huge call by Collins and Davis to start him, and one which they will be hoping pays off.

Article title: Wolves set to unleash Joe Hodge vs Forest

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