Lage ‘sure goals will come’ for Wolves after barren spell

Wolves boss Bruno Lage is confident his side will end their goal drought after failing to find the back of the net in their last three games.

The midlands outfit, currently eighth in the Premier League table, have scored only once in their last five games.

Lage said at his press conference ahead of Saturday’s trip to Manchester City: “We start very well the season, but when you look just at these (opening) three (games), remember – no points and no goals.

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“We have moments. I will say the same thing I said in the first three games – the most important thing is the team work, and the most important thing for the goals is the way we are creating chances.

“So continue to give confidence for the players, don’t make too much pressure, they know they have that pressure. I’m sure the goals will come.”

Wolves take on table-toppers City having lost 1-0 at Molineux to second-placed Liverpool in their last outing, following Divock Origi’s stoppage-time goal. Lage’s men are also set to face Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United in their next six games, between now and New Year’s Day.

“I think it’s the real test. I think when you go to play against these teams it is a big opportunity for us to show our work,” Lage said.

“Against Liverpool, we were there, we tried to play our game. I think we did well, we suffered a goal after hours. The players did everything I asked.

“One game at a time, just focus on Man City, what we can do. I’m sure of two things – they will have more time on the ball than us. But I’m confident when we have the ball we will play our game, like we did against Liverpool. We are ready, we are prepared.”

Focus on #MCIWOL

— Wolves (@Wolves) December 10, 2021

Liverpool’s winner came when Mohamed Salah got past Ki-Jana Hoever, who had just been brought on by Lage, and laid the ball to Origi.

Hoever, a former Reds player, subsequently issued an apology to his team-mates and Wolves supporters via social media.

Lage said: “It wasn’t Ki’s mistake, and I said to him, you don’t need to apologise on social media or here between us, because when we win, we win together, when we lose, we lose together, and it was my decision to put you there (at left-back).”

An in-form player Wolves are set to face on Saturday is Lage’s fellow Portuguese Bernardo Silva, who played under him as a youth at Benfica.

When asked what he would say to Silva if he spoke to him on Saturday, Lage joked: “I will say something (like) if he starts to dribble I will shoot him in his knee!”

Lage was also asked if, with new coronavirus restrictions coming in and double vaccination or a negative lateral flow test to be mandatory for entry to Premier League games, he was worried there could be a return to games with no fans in attendance.

And he said: “Maybe less people, but I don’t believe we go play again without people in the stadium.

“I think one thing (that) is important is that people get vaccinated. I think that’s why we don’t have too many cases, and I hope this new (Omicron) variant cannot cause us problems.

“We are managing things. The first thing we did was to fully vaccinate everyone in the building and continue with our rules.”

Lage also confirmed Willy Boly (muscle injury) and Marcal (Covid) were able to make returns to the matchday squad, and that Conor Coady and Rayan Ait-Nouri were available as well after their knocks sustained against Liverpool.

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