Wolverhampton Wanderers face Leicester City at Molineux on Sunday and given that both sides currently occupy a relegation spot in the Premier League, three points has to be the aim for Steve Davis’ side.
The former Crewe Alexandra boss was confirmed as Wolves’ interim manager until 2023 on Thursday and will be hoping for an improvement from the midweek defeat against Crystal Palace, which consigned the Old Gold to 18th position in the top flight after other sides around them picked up points.
If Davis wants to get the better of Brendan Rodgers’ Foxes, he must aim to exploit one of their biggest weaknesses, which has been defending set pieces.
Last season saw Leicester concede the joint-most goals from set-piece situations in the Premier League with 19 and the Foxes have shown little signs of improvement so far this campaign, shipping five in 11 games this season.
In order to best take advantage of this weakness, Davis must consider restoring Joao Moutinho to his starting side, after the Portuguese maestro was dropped to the bench for the trip to Selhurst Park in midweek.
In November of the 2019/20 campaign, Moutinho was recognised as the most dangerous set-piece taker in the Premier League, creating 13 chances for teammates from corners and free-kicks.
Unfortunately for the Old Gold, they have managed no goals from set-piece situations so far this season, so hopefully Davis will have the squad working on them in training this week, as they need a reliable source of goals given their attacking woes so far this campaign.
In what is sure to be a high-intensity game, Moutinho will also add experience and an air of calm to Wolves’ midfield, so could be crucial to the Old Gold earning a hugely important three points.
Express and Star journalist Liam Keen was full of praise for the veteran midfielder last season after a win against Brentford saying:
“Even in the first half when Wolves really struggled to get into their flow and their rhythm, he was everywhere; he covered every blade of grass. Absolutely outstanding from him today.”
That sort of performance is exactly what is required against Leicester if Wolves want to get themselves out of the relegation zone, and given his prowess from set pieces, Davis would be unwise not to restore Moutinho to his starting line up on Sunday.