Wolverhampton Wanderers are so close to being on the cusp of something special.
It was only at the end of the 2017/18 season they clinched the Championship title and in their first season back in the big time, the west Midlanders secured a seventh-place finish, earning qualification into the Europa League.
The only natural progression from there is to break into the ‘elite’ – the top six. Pushing for a place in the Champions League would be something quite remarkable.
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At the centre of it all has been their manager Nuno Santo. As soon as Chinese conglomerate Fosun took ownership of the club, they acted swiftly to appoint the Portuguese chief, and it’s fair to suggest that it has been the best decision in decades.
However, in order to keep on progressing, Nuno will have to change his mantra otherwise the club will falter at the next hurdle of their quest.
The 45-year-old recently revealed why he uses such a small squad and so far this term, that hasn’t looked likely to change with ten players featuring in 19 or more Premier League matches (there’s been 21 in total so far), per WhoScored.
That only emphasises how much he relies on the same selection of players. He’s rather lucky that injuries and suspensions haven’t completely ripped through the squad.
Furthermore, the ongoing situation with Patrick Cutrone makes for difficult reading as the player looks likely to return to Italy this month after a torrid five months at Molineux.
He just couldn’t buy a game, starting nine of 24 games in all competitions with Raul Jimenez being Nuno’s first and regular choice.
But here lies the problem, if Jimenez were to get injured, Wolves are quite frankly stuffed as there’s no other senior striker at the club.
Likewise at right-forward for Adama Traore, at right wing-back for Matt Doherty and even at centre-back, the Portuguese native has been deploying two central midfielders there to make up for Willy Boly’s absence.
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Nuno has made it clear that he’s after additions during this month’s transfer window, which is all well and good if he changes his attitude towards squad rotation and selection.
That simply has to change if Wolves are to cement their place amongst the Premier League’s elite. Only the chief himself holds the cards to alter that.