Express & Star

Ruben Neves wants that Wolves winning feeling

Wolves star Ruben Neves wants the team to lift the Premier League Asia Trophy this week to maintain their winning feeling.

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Since the midfield maestro joined the club two years ago they have won the Championship title and finished seventh in the Premier League.

Last summer Wolves won a pre-season tournament in Switzerland, the Uhrencup, beating Basel and Young Boys.

Neves wants more of the same this week when they take on Newcastle United in the semi-final in Nanjing on Wednesday and then either Manchester City or West Ham in the final/third place play-off in Shanghai on Saturday.

"We want to maintain that winning feeling, that’s what motivates you for everything – to win. If we can win, even in pre-season, it will be perfect for us," Neves said.

"I think it’s beneficial to have competitive fixtures instead of friendlies, because if you are playing against good teams you can prepare yourself better to play in the competition.

"We are looking forward to the games because we know they’re going to be tough, even though they are pre-season games, and we know our opponents are really good.

"They will be tough games, but we know how Newcastle will want to play, but being pre-season, we don’t know if they’re going to change something. The most important thing is to focus on ourselves, on our shape, on the way we want to play and try to win the game.”

Wolves kick off their Europa League campaign next week, with the Premier League season starting on August 11 when they travel to Leicester City.

What should Wolves' aims for the season be?

"We will continue to do what we did last season, thinking game by game, with our feet on the ground, playing the way we want to play and trying to do our best," the Portuguese midfielder added.

"I arrived here in the Championship two years ago and now, in my third season here, I’m going to play Europa League, so I think we are doing really well, but we want to maintain this and try to get better.

"If you want to be one of the best teams you have to work really hard and it’s difficult to get there, but we’ll stay humble, work hard and see where we can get.

"But we’re mainly thinking game by game and try to win every single game that we have."