Raul Jimenez will be “desperate” to start Wolverhampton Wanderers’ derby clash with Aston Villa despite making a late return from international duty, according to Express & Star journalist Luke Hatfield.
What’s the latest news involving Jimenez?
Jimenez has been on international duty after being called up by Mexico and, with their final fixture of the break from domestic football taking place in the early hours of yesterday, the striker will return to Molineux less than 48 hours before Wolves’ trip to Aston Villa tomorrow.
The 30-year-old’s outing against Canada was his first international appearance since suffering a fractured skull, which led to doctors claiming it was a miracle for Jimenez to still be alive, last year.
Jimenez’s inclusion in Mexico’s squad came after he was hailed by Wolves head coach Bruno Lage, who claimed his best performance of the season came against Newcastle United – the last Premier League clash before the international break.
The frontman was also selected after his homeland opted against including him in their squad last month due to the country being on the UK Government’s Covid-19 red list, which would have resulted in Jimenez carrying out a 10-day hotel quarantine on his return to England.
What has Luke Hatfield said about Jimenez?
Despite crossing the Atlantic Ocean just a matter of hours before Wolves return to action tomorrow afternoon, Hatfield insists Jimenez will be keen to play a prominent role against rivals Aston Villa.
He told GIVEMESPORT: “There will always be questions but I imagine he’ll be desperate to play. He’s missed so long through injury and there’s the fact that it’s one which is labelled as a derby as well.
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“For Villa, the big derby is always Birmingham and for Wolves it’s always West Bromwich Albion. But, in the Premier League, it is the best they’ve got in terms of derby games so both teams will be up for it and every player will want to play. I’m sure Jimenez will be no different.
“He will be really keen to show what he’s all about and, after putting in what Bruno Lage described as his best performance for Wolves this season against Newcastle, he will want to follow that on so it wouldn’t surprise me at all if he was in that starting XI.”
How has Jimenez performed this season?
He followed that up by grabbing two assists in the victory over Newcastle.
Jimenez goes into tomorrow’s trip to Villa Park having failed to miss a single minute of the Premier League campaign so far.