Wolves star Pedro Neto can ease pressure on Raul Jimenez, says John Richards

Former Wolves hero John Richards has backed Pedro Neto to step up on the goal front and ease the pressure on star man Raul Jimenez.

Pedro Neto of Wolverhampton Wanderers celebrates (AMA)
Pedro Neto of Wolverhampton Wanderers celebrates (AMA)

The onus is on the rest of Nuno Espirito Santo’s pack to support Jimenez, especially after the departures of both Diogo Jota and Matt Doherty over the summer.

Jota and Doherty, who are now with Liverpool and Tottenham respectively, scored 23 goals between them in all competitions last term, but Neto opened his account for 2020/21 last time out with a sweet strike against Fulham.

And Richards, who scored 194 goals in 485 Wolves games, believes that will be just the start of a fine season in front of goal for the Portuguese, as he said: “I think he’ll settle into that position and be a regular scorer, which is exactly what you want.

“You can’t just rely on Jimenez to be the out-and-out scorer. You really need the players around you to be knocking them in as well.

“And Neto has got that ability. Hopefully the goal he got against Fulham will give him that confidence.

“He will get better, too, there’s no doubt about it.”

Neto scored five goals last campaign and will be hoping to break into double figures this time around.

He also came up with a double for Portugal Under-21s as they beat Norway 4-1 last Friday, with Wolves team-mate Vitinha also on the scoresheet.

Jimenez, after scoring a whopping 27 goals in 2019/20, leads the way five games into the new season with two goals, while Romain Saiss is the other player to have scored for Nuno’s pack.

Richards hopes the likes of Ruben Neves and £35million club-record signing Fabio Silva will start firing for Wolves in the coming weeks, too.

“I’d like to see a few others as well,” he added.

“Obviously you have Neves chipping in every now and again with a cracking goal, but they need about four or five regular scorers.

“And I’m looking forward to what Silva can properly bring to the team as he’s an exciting young lad.

“It’ll come for him, I’m sure, and I’m looking forward to that.

“Hopefully, after a few more games, he can get himself a start and play more regularly.”

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