Wolves boss Nuno looking to stay on an upward curve

Their last game was a rollercoaster but, through it all, Wolves were able to set the standard which Nuno Espirito Santo wants every week.

Wolves turned on the style in the second half at Southampton last weekend, and Nuno is looking for that level consistently (AMA)
Wolves turned on the style in the second half at Southampton last weekend, and Nuno is looking for that level consistently (AMA)

A woeful first half at Southampton was, amazingly, followed up by one of their most fluid spells of the season to win 2-1 and make it three unbeaten in the Premier League.

In the second period at St Mary’s, Pedro Neto of course scored a wonderful solo goal, but the team effort was the best they had managed in ages.

Wolves displayed a ‘fantastic’ attitude, winning duels and pressing high – and Nuno is looking for more of the same against the energetic, fearless Leeds.

On whether that vastly-improved 45 minutes set the blueprint to follow moving forward, he said: “We always try. Sometimes you achieve and sometimes you don’t.

“Sometimes your opponent doesn’t allow you to, or the circumstances of the game don’t allow you to, but the attitude is always the same.

“There is no negotiation on that aspect of the game.

“We did well against Southampton, the attitude of the players was fantastic, so let’s try to reproduce and improve against Leeds.”

Tonight’s visitors have earned plaudits from fans, players and pundits alike this season for their bold, attack-minded approach.

They sit two points above 12th-placed Wolves, having played a game fewer, and Nuno admits they are a unique entity.

“It is extraordinary, the way that Leeds compete,” he said.

“I think they have created their own identity, that makes the task of the opponent very hard.

“We’ve been seeing that, so we must find the right solutions.

“They’re a very good team, very special and unique in the way they approach the game.

“You can see they have a fantastic squad and manager.

“The tactical approach they have, going man for man all over the pitch, is unique in the Premier League.

“Marcelo Bielsa, undoubtedly, is one of the greatest managers, so we realise they are very competitive. It will require the best of us.”

Nuno says Adama Traore could be key (AMA)

Such is Leeds’ approach, they have had many high-scoring games this season – not always ending up on the right side.

They have beaten Albion 5-0, for example, but also lost 6-2 at Manchester United. Seeing Bielsa’s team has almost been akin to watching a game of basketball, at times – end-to-end stuff.

“We have to be ready for it, if the game becomes too open it can create an advantage for Leeds. So, we must avoid it,” said Nuno.

“Trying to keep a good rhythm which fits us is better, but at the same time realising Leeds are very good at what they do.

“The way they accelerate, the way they recover the ball, the way they press, the way they transform a defensive situation to an offensive situation with large numbers in attack... it’s something we have to be ready for. We have to have good answers.”

Wolves go into it with no new injury developments – Willy Boly and Daniel Podence still out – while Nuno hopes Adama Traore can gives Leeds significant problems.

“The advantage is the way they work as a team which allows them to engage so many people in offensive situations – the way they press, the way they recover,” he added.

“But at the same time it opens spaces which we have to take advantage of.

“Players like Adama can create problems for all teams – all the opponents in the world – because Adama is so very special. In the case of (Leeds), if we are able to find good situations to promote one-on-one situations with Adama, we can gain a big advantage.”

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