Wolves midfielder Joao Moutinho back to his best

This article is part of Football FanCast’s In Numbers series, which takes a statistical look at performances, season-long form and reported transfer targets… 

Wolves condemned reigning Champions Manchester City to their second defeat of the season with a shock 2-0 win at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

The result means Pep Guardiola’s men now sit a vast eight points behind league leaders Liverpool while for Nuno Santo and his side, it is three straight wins in all competitions.

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It’s been quite some turnaround for Wolves, who less than a month ago were smashed 5-2 by Chelsea at Molineux to put serious doubts over whether they would be able to replicate last season’s historic season of reaching seventh in the Premier League.

One key issue that attributed to their poor start to the season was the underwhelming performances from those who run the strings in the heart of midfield, but this City showing could prove that one of those figures is simmering back towards his best.

Joao Moutinho was one of Nuno’s most influential players last season as he recorded a team-high eight assists in the top-flight, but so far this season, he has only been able to manage the one.

Though he is recording more dribbles on average per game this season than he did during the 2018/19 campaign.

However, he’s not only being utilised as a creative outlet as this term he has seemingly added more defensive attributes to his game, which could make him a James Milner of sorts; a fine wine – only getting better with age.

Against City, the 33-year-old registered five tackles, three interceptions, one key pass and one successful dribble, per SofaScore.

You could say that Moutinho was all over the pitch, and his WhoScored heat map would back that up entirely – just going to show how vital he is to Wolves’ success through the midfield.

Football FanCast have previously highlighted how Moutinho has regressed this season, but if he can back this showing up after the international break, the Portuguese playmaker would fully be worth his reported contract extension.

Did Wolves make a mistake letting Cav & Costa go?

Yes

Yes

No

No
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