This article is part of Football FanCast’s The Chalkboard series, which provides a tactical insight into teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Nuno Santo has often utilised a small squad since he took over the club in 2017, and it has never really been an issue.
If anything, it only goes to show the sort of job he’s achieved at Molineux. Wolves won the Championship title in 2018 and qualified for the Europa League last season by finishing seventh in the Premier League – their very first season back in the top-flight.
This term, the Portuguese boss has used just 19 players with 11 of them playing in 12 or more matches, per WhoScored.
But now with the burden of additional fixtures, it could be a wise decision to bolster the playing squad, and that seems likely given Nuno’s recent comments.
Earlier this week, two different reports emerged that could change the landscape of Wolves’ frontline.
First, summer arrival Patrick Cutrone was linked with a switch back to Serie A as Bologna are keen on his services if they cannot attract number one target Zlatan Ibrahimovic to the club (La Repubblica via Sport Witness).
And now The Telegraph claim RB Salzburg striker Hwang Hee-Chan is a prime target for Nuno in January, although, he could be loaned back to his current club for the rest of the season.
It is believed that he should be available for between €20m-€25m (£16.9m-£21.2m).
Although the two reports are merely coincidental, it could mean that Cutrone is under a bit of pressure to perform. He’s so far struggled for game time since his move from AC Milan in the summer.
The 21-year-old has started just three of 16 matches in the Premier League as Raul Jimenez continues to be preferred.
Hee-Chan, on the other hand, has been electric for the Austrian outfit, including in the Champions League this season where he scored and assisted against defending champions, Liverpool.
In total, he’s netted nine goals and provided 14 assists per Transfermarkt, which is substantially better than the Italian’s entire amount for last season (11 goal contributions) before he clinched the transfer to Molineux.
Cutrone will have to buck up his ideas fast as Nuno strengthening this area only puts his credentials at risk, especially with clubs keen on taking him on.
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