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Romain Saiss: Fernando Marcal making his mark at Wolves

Wolves defender Romain Saiss has hailed the ability of Fernando Marcal as the Brazilian works his way towards being fit for the trip to Leeds.

Fernando Marcal of Wolverhampton Wanderers. (AMA)
Fernando Marcal of Wolverhampton Wanderers. (AMA)

Saiss is delighted to have Marcal – who he has played against before in France – in the fold, having helped former club Olympique Lyonnais get to the Champions League semi-finals last season.

The 31-year-old was snapped up on a two-year deal for £1.8million and, after missing the last couple of games with a calf injury, hopes to be ready for the Elland Road clash a week on Monday.

And Saiss, who filled in at left-wing-back because of Marcal’s absence as Wolves beat Fulham 1-0 last weekend, said: “He’s a good player. He played for a good club in France, Lyon, and I’ve played against him in the past. He played in the top division in France for many years, so he has the quality and the experience.

“He has quality as a defender and as an offensive player also.

“It’s good for the team, and good for me on the left side.”

Marcal is one of six fresh faces Wolves signed over the summer transfer window, with the others being Fabio Silva, Vitinha, Ki-Jana Hoever, Nelson Semedo and Rayan Ait-Nouri.

After limping off early on in the defeat against Manchester City and missing the matches against West Ham and Fulham, he is set to battle Ait-Nouri – also coming in from the French top flight, arriving on loan from Angers with a view to a permanent £20m deal next summer – for the left-wing-back slot over the coming weeks.

Jonny Castro Otto will also bolster that area when he returns from his anterior cruciate ligament injury, likely in the new year, with his rehabilitation thought to be going well following an operation.

Marcal was brought in as a ‘direct replacement’ for the injured Spaniard but can also play at the heart of defence.

He impressed on his Premier League bow against Sheffield United and, having also had spells in both Portugal and Turkey, is one of the most experienced members of Nuno Espirito Santo’s squad.

“He’s strong defensively and he likes to play forward. He wants to bring something in the game offensively,” added Saiss on Marcal. “It’s good for the team because we lost Jonny.

“He’s so good on his left side, so I enjoy playing with him and, for him, I hope that it’s just the beginning.”

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