Wolves are firmly in the race to sign Sporting Lisbon midfielder Joao Palhinha in the upcoming summer transfer window with the futures of midfield duo Ruben Neves and Joao Moutinho in serious doubt.
According to transfer insider Dean Jones, the West Midlands club are in the hunt for Palhinha’s signature.
Speaking to GIVEMESPORT, the journalist said: “Wolves are definitely in the hunt for people like that, and I think Tottenham were interested in Palhinha. But I would imagine that Wolves would probably have the jump on them for a player like that, to be honest.”
The Athletic’s David Ornstein had confirmed that Bruno Lage’s side are interested in Palhinha as well as Matheus Luiz Nunes last week with Neves and Moutinho’s respective futures in doubt.
Now, it seems that the Black Country outfit could have the upper hand in the race to sign the 26-year-old midfielder.
Already there’s an argument that Wolves need to add to their midfield but if Neves and Moutinho are both to depart then it will be absolutely vital to recruit in the middle of the park.
The latter’s contract is set to expire in June whilst the former has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester United and there is an understanding that the 25-year-old will be allowed to depart for a bigger club after five years of excellent service if a suitable offer comes in.
At 26, Palhinha is at an excellent age to be a long-term replacement for either figure with the Sporting star regularly impressing on the European stage.
In fact, manager Ruben Amorim labelled the Portuguese as a “special player” amid links to Manchester United last season.
According to SofaScore, the 26-year-old has averaged an impressive 7.14 match rating in the Primeira Liga, completing 87% of his passes and maintaining a 58% dribble accuracy.
From a defensive aspect, Palhinha has been excellent, chipping in with an average of 3.1 tackles per game as well as one interception and one clearance.
Compared to Neves, the current Wolves player slightly edges his fellow countryman in the Premier League, averaging a 7.2 rating whilst having a slightly lower passing accuracy at 84%.
Moreover, the 25-year-old is currently contributing 1.3 interceptions, 2.3 tackles and 1.4 clearances.
However, this shows that if Neves is to depart and Palhinha is the man to replace the loyal servant, Wolves’ midfield will still be in excellent hands.