Wolves look set to complete the signing of Sporting Lisbon midfielder Joao Palhinha in the coming days, if recent reports are to be believed.
According to Jordan Davies in The Sun, the Portugal international will join Bruno Lage’s side in a £20m deal this summer, with the 26-year-old likely to be confirmed as an Old Gold player in the near future.
With Ruben Neves seemingly on his way out of Molineux, Lage has worked quickly to bring in a potential replacement for the 25-year-old midfielder, with Wolves seemingly once again taking advantage of their Portuguese connections to secure a deal.
Palhinha has been a virtual ever-present for Sporting Lisbon in the past two seasons and has regularly produced excellent performances for the Lions, averaging an impressive 7.03 rating from WhoScored for his performances this term.
At 6 foot 3, he could add some steel to Lage’s side and may offer a different, more physical option to Neves alongside fellow Portuguese maestro Joao Moutinho in Wolves’ midfield.
The former Braga man averaged three tackles per game in the Primeira Liga this season, which was more than any Wolves player in the Premier League, which goes to show just what the 26-year-old could add at Molineux.
Sporting Lisbon manager Ruben Amorim will certainly be disappointed to lose one of his most consistent midfielders, as he was full of praise for the 12-cap international this season, saying: “I tell Palhinha many times that he is very good without the ball and with the ball. More than tactical-technical, I get it into Palhinha’s head that he is a special player.”
While potentially losing Neves will undoubtedly be a blow for Wolves, considering his excellent performances for the club since joining from Porto in 2017 – he was their third-best performer to start more than 10 league games this term, as per WhoScored – supporters will undoubtedly be delighted that the Old Gold have quickly sought out a replacement in Palhinha.
If the 26-year-old can replicate his performances from Portugal in the Premier League, then he would surely prove to be a success in Lage’s side next season.
In other news… Tim Spiers has dropped this exciting transfer hint