Express & Star

Julen Lopetegui keen to sharpen Wolves attack in World Cup break

Julen Lopetegui is looking to work on sharpening Wolves’ forward line during the World Cup break.

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Wolves have suffered from a lack of goals for some time and the new head coach will focus on ways of improving the team’s output in the final third following a measly record of eight goals in Premier League games for the bottom side.

The Molineux men have been hampered by a lack of centre-forward options this term but Lopetegui insists Wolves must work on scoring as a unit, without a reliance on a centre-forward

Lopetegui said: “Sasa’s injury at the start of the season, it was an important investment from the club and unfortunately he’s injured.

“After that Diego (Costa) is coming. We are going to try to choose the next options, not only for this position.

“Sometimes you can play without a striker and you can score goals. We have to try to improve the rest of the players too, not only putting the focus on the striker. We want to put the focus on the team, the way the team is attacking and defending, but as a block, not only thinking about one player and one position.”

New recruit Sasa Kalajdzic was ruled out for the season with injury. Raul Jimenez, currently in Qatar with Mexico, has also been sidelined this term and Diego Costa has served a three-match suspension – the latter pair will return for the returning EFL Cup tie against Gillingham.

Lopetegui has other wide forward options, including Goncalo Guedes, Hwang Hee-chan – whose World Cup bow with South Korea today is in doubt owing to a hamstring complaint – Adama Traore, Daniel Podence and Pedro Neto, who is also due a return from injury.

The head coach is likely to look to strengthen his centre-forward options in January.