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Wolves should go for Craig Dawson over Felipe

Wolves are clearly keen to add a centre-back in this month’s transfer window, but Julen Lopetegui should prioritise a move for Craig Dawson over Felipe.

Following the summer departures of Romain Saiss, Conor Coady and Willy Boly, the Old Gold have looked rather susceptible at the back so far this season, while their lack of depth was exposed after Nathan Collins’ sending off in the defeat against Manchester City earlier in the season.

Bruno Lage had wanted to sign Dawson last summer but saw the move collapse on deadline day after West Ham failed to bring in Jan Bendarek from Southampton. However, it seems as if a move could well be on the cards again this month as the 32-year-old seeks a move north.

Atletico Madrid centre-back Felipe has also been touted as potential option for Lopetegui in the transfer window, with recent reports claiming that the Wolves manager has even called the Brazilian defender with the hope of convincing him to move to the Black Country.

However, the 33-year-old has struggled for regular game-time under Diego Simeone this season, making just three appearances in La Liga and averaging a disappointing 6.43 rating from WhoScored for his performances.

Meanwhile, Dawson has featured eight times in the Premier League and has a huge amount of experience in the English top flight with the Hammers, West Brom and Watford (246 games), so he wouldn’t need any time to adapt.

He has also averaged more tackles (1.3 vs one), interceptions (0.8 vs none) and clearances (3.3 vs 2.3) per game than Felipe, which suggests that the Englishman would be the better option for Lopetegui.

After missing the first few weeks of the season through injury, the former England U21 international made his first start in the Europa Conference League against Silkeborg, with Moyes praising him after that game.

The Irons manager said: “I think he’s still probably a bit behind fitness-wise but he’s an old warrior, Daws. He knows how to get through the games, he knows the jobs. As you can see, we’ve been struggling to score from a corner kick at times and right away, Daws comes in and finds the spot and gets it right away. He’s invaluable for those sorts of actions and those moments.”

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Bruno Lage on the touchline for Wolves.

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While Dawson could cost as much as £7m this month, Wolves would not only be boosting their own survival hopes in signing the centre-back, but also potentially damaging West Ham’s in what would be a double boon for the Midlanders.

Last weekend’s 1-0 win at Molineux saw the Old Gold leapfrog the Hammers in the Premier League table, and it seems clear that the 18th-placed east Londoners are embroiled in a relegation battle this season, so losing a dependable and experienced centre-back could prove to be a blow to Moyes.

Therefore, Lopetegui should do all that he can to bring Dawson, rather than Felipe, to Molineux this month, as doing so would not only strengthen the Wolves pack but also weaken a direct positional rival.