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Bruno Lage: We must be proud of the Wolves players

Bruno Lage has called for unity and insists the fans should be ‘proud’ of the Wolves players after their late loss to Liverpool.

Bruno Lage. Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire.
Bruno Lage. Picture: Nick Potts/PA Wire.

Wolves held their own for much of the clash and looked set to earn a well fought point.

But deep into added time substitute Ki-Jana Hoever lost the ball in Liverpool’s half and then got taken on by Mohamed Salah who set up the winner for Divock Origi.

Although Lage would not criticise the young defender, he said his team had to keep the ball in that situation.

“The most important thing to say is that when we win we win together and when we lose we lose together,” Lage said.

“I think we had a solid performance and then in extra time we cannot lose that ball the way we did.

“Our job and our strategy was to never give the transition to them. We need to be there, every time, ready when we lose the ball not to give the transition to them.

“I don’t remember a transition for Liverpool that’s why it was so important when we pressed and when we had the ball to find the right spaces.

“If these guys have space, like what happened in this situation, they can create chances.

“I don’t want to point to anyone. It’s frustrating when I come into the dressing room and see my players’ faces because I think they deserved not to lose this game.

“It’s a little bit disappointing. It’s hard to lose that point, but me and the fans should be proud of our players.”

The Wolves players collapsed in devastation after the 94th minute winner after fighting so hard for a point in front of their home fans.

And Lage admitted seeing his players upset in the dressing room after the game was tough to take.

“It was harder for me to see their faces at the end than when we conceded the goal,” he added.

“We move on, this is football.

“We had the same taste against Leeds and the opposite taste against Aston Villa.

“We’re trying to learn. We have a young team and they need to understand the moment in the game to not do that.

“We keep going. We are learning with what happened today in this game, the way we played against them, and then move on.

“Today we played one of the best teams in the world and for sure next week we will play again against one of the best teams in the world. We move on.”

Wolves attempted to press Liverpool and did manage to disrupt their rhythm for large parts of the game, and Lage was pleased with how his side adapted tactically.

“Hwang, Raul and Adama pressed well,” he said.

“When you look at Liverpool and how they build up, they normally use one midfielder in Fabinho and today they also put Thiago near them.

“Sometimes you can be a little bit confused, especially in the first 10 minutes, how to press. But after that, and especially after the second half, we had time to talk with the players and I thought we pressed well.

“We pressed a little higher and we had more space to create our chances. We are very solid. Semedo, Rayan and especially the three centre-backs, are doing a fantastic job for us. I am proud of everyone. It was important for us to listen to Jurgen Klopp’s words about our team and how we play as a unit.”

Meanwhile, Rayan Ait-Nouri came off in the final minutes with a knock and Lage says they still need to assess the injury.

“I need to wait and clarify because everything has happened so soon,” he said.

“We need to receive the information from the medical department because he was on the floor, came off and then came back on.”

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