Wolverhampton Wanderers will go into today’s match desperate for a win, and Bruno Lage will be well aware of the pressure mounting regarding his performance.
The 46-year-old has currently led the Old Gold to just one win in their opening seven Premier League fixtures, and at the end of the 2021/22 campaign, his side had won just once between March and the end of the season.
He will also be aware of the pressure faced by West Ham United boss David Moyes, however, and will be well aware that the meeting represents a fine opportunity to get another win under his belt to kickstart his side’s season.
To ensure his side has the best possible chance of victory, the Portuguese coach must make some ruthless calls. In a sensational double-dropping, Pedro Neto and Jonny must make way in favour of some freshness down the right-hand side.
These two have endured a terrible start to the Premier League season, with the former yet to score or assist despite supposedly being their star man.
With Neto currently on a £50k-per-week deal, the two are underperforming on a level way below their combined salaries of £87k-per-weeek. They need to improve.
If Jonny is not offering anything going forward or at the back, then perhaps it could be time to recall Nelson Semedo and pair him with the raw pace of Adama Traore.
Although both have at times seemed like forgotten men, the Portuguese defender at least boasts the attacking credentials to make him more of an asset at right-back than the current starter. It could also help Lage create a more fluid side, countering the notion that he plays poor football.
Meanwhile, although Traore has never been one for particularly impressive statistics, last season at least had a SofaScore rating of 7.05 whilst averaging 0.9 key passes per game. He is, at the very least, a constant threat with his raw physicality. He would bully Aaron Cresswell.
Neto and Jonny are letting the side down with their lacklustre performances, and Lage could do much worse than replacing them with the aforementioned duo.