An opening day defeat to Leeds United was followed by a grim 0-0 draw against Fulham which highlighted the need for an out-and-out goalscorer and some much-needed creativity in the middle of the park.
Transfer activity has been sparse in the Black Country over the summer, with Lage adding Nathan Collins and Goncalo Guedes, while Hwang Hee-chan’s loan move became permanent. However, it is the midweek deal for Sporting Lisbon midfielder Matheus Nunes which has caught the eye, and he could be a key player for the team going forward.
Even though the 23-year-old has just arrived at the club, Nunes should be unleashed against Tottenham Hotspur this afternoon, as he could make all the difference in the middle of the Wolves midfield.
With Joao Moutinho having suffered an injury which caused him to miss the matches against Leeds and Fulham, Nunes could slot straight into the engine room alongside Ruben Neves and control the Wolves midfield.
Last season, Nunes averaged a SofaScore rating of 6.95 while chipping in with three goals and two assists, proving he can add the occasional goal from midfield. He made 0.7 key passes while averaging 59.5 touches per game, which shows that he is always ready to get involved and create opportunities.
Defensively, Nunes can also be an asset to his team. In Liga Portugal last season, the 23-year-old made 0.9 interceptions and won 1.3 tackles per game, winning 55% of his total duels.
This showcases his ability to contribute at either end of the pitch and could give Lage and Wolves a massive boost this season.
It’s clear that the Old Gold needed more reinforcements in both the midfield and attacking areas given injuries to key players in those positions, and with the signings of Guedes and Nunes, they appear to have added real quality.
If match-fit today, Nunes should be one of the first names on the team sheet, and winning the midfield battle could depend on his inclusion from the start.
His move to Molineux was dubbed “eye-catching” by The Telegraph’s John Percy, and if the 23-year-old picks up where he left off in Portugal, he could prove to be an instant game-changer for his new club.