Wolverhampton Wanderers are fast approaching January, a month that could well define their season, depending on how they go about their business.
The west Midlanders currently sit on the cusp of the Premier League’s top six and will also have to contend with the Europa League knockout stages as well as the FA Cup.
Nuno Santo’s small squad is certainly going to get stretched so additions next month to bolster the team could be crucial.
One player they have been linked with this week is Queens Park Rangers midfielder-turned-defender Ryan Manning, according to Football Insider.
The 23-year-old has become Mark Warburton’s first-choice left wing-back this season, playing all 23 league games this term.
Wolves already have Jonny and Ruben Vinagre in the position so would it be a wise move?
Here’s what our writers think…
“There would be a hint of irony about Nuno Santo adding more numbers to his small squad in a position he already has covered. In my opinion, Wolves would be throwing away money if through brought in Manning. There’s no denying he’s done well in the Championship this term, claiming three assists and winning 2.1 tackles per game, but they already have Jonny and Ruben Vinagre at their disposal.
“Vinagre doesn’t receive much game time as it is. The young left-wing back hasn’t started in the top-flight since October so with that in mind, Manning or indeed another left-back shouldn’t be a priority. They already have Max Kilman who can do a job in that position too. Wolves should focus their attentions elsewhere in January.”
“It is pretty ludicrous that Wolves are looking to buy someone to help out at left-wing-back when they are covered in that area, but have clear holes in others. Manning has been impressive so far this season, making four goal contributions, while averaging 2.1 tackles and 1.4 interceptions per game. However, Vinagre has already had limited game time, and another player in this position is simply not needed. Their focus should be in the central areas.”
“I think that this is a bit of an unnecessary signing from Wolves’ point of view.
“The Midlands club are absolutely stacked in the left wing-back position with Jonny Otto and Ruben Vinagre both providing adequate cover in that role.
“The only thing you could say is that Manning would be an option for the future as he’s just 23 years old, but Vinagre is even younger than that, so it just seems a bit unnecessary.
“It wouldn’t be a bad signing by any means, but it’s not one Wolves need right now, and I’d have to ask how he’d get into their team.”
“Although Wolves appear well-stocked in the left-sided defensive role, they can do no harm in landing QPR defender Ryan Manning. Jonny needs a viable backup option going forward, especially if Nuno Santo wants to compete on all fronts – this is something that can’t be done if the Portuguese boss continues to not rotate his side. They could easily suffer from burnout towards the back end of the season and see their top six claims go up in flames. Ruben Vinagre does not appear to be the man to provide such a role as he’s not featured since October, a loan move for him would be more suitable, thus allowing Manning to come in and contend with the Spaniard. He’s also been groomed in the exact same formation so he wouldn’t need much time to settle in.”
Calling all Premier League experts: Who do these unique statistics belong to? Find out below….