Kenny Jackett: Eusebio Bancessi was close to Wolves debut
Kenny Jackett today admitted he's been "very close" to unleashing Wolves 'find' Eusebio Bancessi for six months – but that their pursuit of records meant he didn't get his chance.
The powerfully-built Portuguese winger has taken Wolves' Under-21s by storm, ending as their eight-goal top scorer in 16 games despite being only 18 and in his first season in England after his switch from Benfica last August.
Head coach Jackett currently has three senior wingers in James Henry, Michael Jacobs and Bakary Sako, who all excelled on their way to Wolves' record-breaking League One title success, filling three of the club's top five scorer slots with 10, eight and 13 respectively, with Sako topscoring.
Bancessi has yet to play at first-team level, appearing as an unused substitute for the home games against Leyton Orient and Peterborough.
But Jackett revealed the wideman, who still speaks little English, has featured high in his thoughts for some time.
"If we hadn't been where we were at the end of the season, where even at the Coventry game I left people out and players were disappointed because they wanted to keep playing and we were going for the record, I could have given him a game," admitted Jackett.
"He's been that close to playing, so he's close to my thinking and has been for perhaps six months - we have high hopes for him."
Despite his tender years, Bancessi has a formidable frame which suggests he wouldn't be intimidated by the Championship.
And Jackett believes the youngster's goalscoring record in the development team means he can't be ignored.
"He has that look about him and his goalscoring in the Under-21s is something you can't take away," said the boss.
"In the system we play you can't just have one scorer, ie the centre forward.
"It has to come from others and we've done that quite well.
"It's a challenge in that system because the wide men have to come off the line and score.
"Michael Jacobs got eight goals, James Henry 10 and Bakary Sako got 13 etc.
"Eusebio has that capability in his game for the 21s where he's averaged almost a goal per game, which is a really big thing."
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