Wolves: 211-game star 'needs to move' from Molineux

Wolverhampton Wanderers boss Bruno Lage points the way

Wolverhampton Wanderers head coach Bruno Lage could find himself in a ‘predicament’ over Ruben Neves’ Molineux future after failing to qualify for Europe, according to journalist Josh Holland.

A 1-1 draw with already relegated Norwich City means Wolves cannot finish higher than eighth in the Premier League this season, so they will not bag a place in any of the continental competitions on offer.

What’s the latest news involving Neves?

Spanish sources have claimed Barcelona have moved a step closer towards sealing a deal for Neves as his agent, Jorge Mendes, believes he can negotiate favourable terms for the Catalan giants.

Neves, who has been on Wolves’ books since completing a then-club record move worth £15.8million in 2017, is being seen as a potential long-term replacement for Barcelona defensive midfielder Sergio Busquets.

However, it was previously revealed that the Portuguese would prefer to remain in the Premier League if he were to leave Molineux – amid interest from Manchester United and Arsenal – and his current employers would demand a fee in the region of £70million.

That figure falls some way short of Lage’s valuation of Neves, with the Wolves boss insisting the central midfielder is worth £100million.

Neves is set to enter the final two years of his £50,000-per-week contract in the summer, but his current employers have opened discussions over a new deal as they look to keep him in the West Midlands.

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What has Josh Holland said about Neves?

Holland believes Wolves will struggle to match this season’s performance levels if Neves moves onto pastures new.

The journalist understands Neves’ representatives have already held talks with Barcelona ahead of a potential switch to the Nou Camp.

Holland told GIVEMESPORT: “If you lose Neves with no European football, Bruno Lage could be in a bit of a predicament because if they sell Neves with no European football, are they going to get back?

“I know we spoke about players last year and the ambition of it, but I think he’s got to move.

“I think I saw his agent was at lunch with people from Barcelona.”

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Would Neves’ departure come as a blow?

There is no doubt that Lage, who was appointed as Wolves’ chief last summer, would like to keep Neves at Molineux.

He has previously suggested the 26-cap Portugal international is ‘very important’ and could ‘help the team go to the next level’.

Neves has scored 24 goals and contributed a further 12 assists in 211 appearances for Wolves, so it would be difficult for Lage to find an upgrade on the 25-year-old.

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