Wolverhampton Wanderers have enjoyed an impressive first campaign under Bruno Lage, with the West Midlands outfit sat in eighth place after 30 matches in the Premier League.
However, a criticism of Wolves this term has been their lack of goals, scoring just 31 in those 30 matches, it’s been their remarkable defence that has gotten them to where they are.
There is certainly room for more creativity in the final third going into next season, which will make the failed attempt to sign 20-year-old Crystal Palace winger Michael Olise from Reading in 2020 particularly painful.
Wolves were reported to have seen a £5m bid for the French youngster rejected in October 2020 and never went back in for the forward before the Eagles swooped the following summer window, signing the exciting prospect for just £8m, a fee that now seems a bargain.
Having scored seven goals and registered 12 assists in 46 Championship appearances last term, the former Royals man was named the EFL Young Player of the Season before making the step up to the Premier League.
After a slow start to life at Selhurst Park, the 20-year-old Frenchman has four goals and seven assists in 25 appearances for Patrick Vieira’s side across all competitions, an impressive first season in the top-flight that will surely have the Wolves hierarchy kicking themselves.
With Olise’s transfer to South London costing as little as it did, the Eagles will be licking their lips at the financial gain they will eventually make via the playmaker, with his transfer value already double what Palace paid for his services.
According to Transfermarkt, the 20-year-old is now worth £16.2m, having been valued at £13.5m when making the move to Selhurst Park, further emphasising how much of a bargain Vieira’s side got.
The French manager was full of praise for his fellow countryman after the youngster scored in Palace’s 2-0 FA Cup win over Hartlepool United, stating: “When you look at the last round and this one, he played well. He can score goals, create chances and he is a special talent.
“He will improve and get better as a player. His work ethic every day has been terrific since he has been at the football club.”
When you look at Wolves’ current squad, there is certainly room for Olise with Lage’s side in need of adding extra creativity to their front line in the summer transfer window.
The Golden Boys haven’t seen their wingers contribute consistently enough in the final third this term, with Daniel Podence (two) and Francisco Trincao (one) scoring a combined three goals in the Premier League throughout 2021/22.
Pedro Neto’s return to action has been met with plenty of excitement. However, having sustained a serious knee injury last April, the 22-year-old has hardly played any football over the last year and will require patience before finding the level the Portugal international was at prior to his major setback.
Wolves may still qualify for Europe this season with Lage’s side two points off of the top six, however, if they are to achieve that feat it will be mainly down to the excellence of their defensive structure, with the Black Country club boasting the fourth-best defence in the top-flight having conceded just 26 goals in 30 matches.
Therefore, Fosun will need to allow investment in the attacking department during the summer, something that could’ve been less of a concern had Wolves taken the risk of submitting a higher bid for Olise.