Christian Marques out to make his mark for Wolves

Pre-season is often the perfect time for youngsters at any club to stake their claim.

Christian Marques (Getty)
Christian Marques (Getty)

And at Wolves it is no different, with several academy talents getting an opportunity to shine over the last two-and-a-half weeks.

This Saturday’s friendly against Celta Vigo is Bruno Lage’s last opportunity to hone his style in a match setting before the Premier League gets under way the following week.

In that clash with the Spanish side, Lage will likely start his strongest team – injuries aside – while some youngsters may get a chance from the bench.

But the last five pre-season friendlies have handed opportunities to several teenagers – including highly-rated defender Christian Marques.

The 18-year-old was given the full 90 minutes against Coventry on Sunday.

He played in all three centre-back positions, in the 3-4-3 formation, during the match and was given a stern test by the lively Martyn Waghorn and Viktor Gyokeres.

It was also one of the biggest crowds the teenager has played in front of and with a strong Wolves following travelling to Coventry, Marques was eager to use them as motivation.

He told the Express & Star: “There’s nerves because there’s a crowd there and if you make a mistake they boo. I’ve never had that before, I hadn’t experienced it yet.

“But if you do something well they motivate you even more, to keep doing better.

“You can hear everything they say and it gives you motivation to keep getting better, but if they do boo a mistake you just have to focus on the game without getting too nervous. The experience is good to have. I’ve been playing in the middle for quite a long time and then went to the right for the start, and then later the left.

“It’s a bit different playing each position but you have to adapt and take it as it comes.”

Marques has seemingly outgrown the under-23s, but may also see his first-team opportunities limited this season.

It is understood he is being earmarked for a loan move this year and the centre-back is eager to get more minutes – whether with Wolves or on loan elsewhere.

He added: “That’s now my main priority, trying to get a loan move or getting into the first team squad.

“I haven’t talked to my agents yet so I’m not sure which clubs I could go to, but my main thing in pre-season it to show the manager what I can do.

“Then we’ll decide if it’s good for me to stay at Wolves and get into the first team squad, or if he says I have to go to the under-23’s, I will probably go on loan then.”

Young midfielder Taylor Perry is also understood to be catching the attention of other clubs with a loan deal a possibility.

The 20-year-old has featured heavily in pre-season after starting the opening friendly against Crewe and, speaking to the Express & Star at the time, Perry was keen to fight for some minutes in a Wolves shirt this season.

He said: “Of course, it’s the main objective. That’s the plan.

“If it doesn’t work out, then it doesn’t work out, but the main objective is to play for the Wolves first team. I signed a new contract this year and I’m pushing on now. Staying focused and working hard. We’ll see what comes of it.

“Obviously I’d like to stay here at Wolves and fight for my place in the first team, that’s every young boy’s dream. That’s what I’m trying to do. Keep working hard, prove myself that I’m good enough to play in this first team and we’ll see what happens.

“Hopefully it could be a big season for me.”

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