Shropshire Star

Andy Thompson excited by 'promising' Wolves wing-back Rayan Ait-Nouri

Former Wolves star Andy Thompson is excited to see how ‘promising’ wing-back Rayan Ait-Nouri progresses after shining on his debut.

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The 19-year-old Frenchman opened the scoring and helped Nuno Espirito Santo’s side keep a clean sheet as they beat Crystal Palace 2-0 last Friday.

And former full-back Thompson, who made 451 appearances in gold and black, was impressed with the youngster on loan from Angers.

“I thought he grew into the game. As the game went on, he just got better and better,” said Thompson on Ait-Nouri, who Wolves have the option to buy for £20million next summer.

“It was a good debut for him and it looks promising.

“I noticed how he kept things simple early on, didn’t try to force things.

“Then the longer the game went on, he grew in confidence.

“That was definitely on show, and he was able to top it off with a goal, and it was a great strike.

“It sat up nicely for him, but he finished it well with a lot of accuracy.”

Thompson also liked what he saw from ex-Barcelona man Nelson Semedo, on the opposite flank, against the Eagles.

“That was Semedo’s best game since he’s come in as well. He played really well,” he said.

“You could see he was trying to get deliveries into the box early.

“He was a bit quieter in the second half, but he was causing a lot of problems early on.”

Thompson added on the duo: “A lot of our play comes from those areas, the wing-backs giving you that width.

“Semedo, in the first half, pushed down that right and, to be fair, Conor Coady and Ruben Neves kept finding him with brilliant passes.

“It’s encouraging and they’ve got competition as well, which is what you need.

“That should keep driving the pair of them forward.”