Express & Star

Gary O'Neil hopeful on Matheus Nunes Wolves stay

Wolves boss Gary O’Neil is hopeful Matheus Nunes will still be at Wolves after the transfer window closes and insists there has been no second bid for the midfielder from Manchester City.

Last updated
Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Gary O'Neil applauds the fans

Nunes has stopped training as he looks to force through a move to the Premier League champions and while O’Neil tempered his criticism, he admitted the Portugal international “definitely didn’t” need to act in such a manner.

Wolves rejected a £47million bid from City last week but O’Neil said reports of a second, improved bid were wide of the mark.

Speaking after Tuesday’s 5-0 Carabao Cup win over Blackpool, he said: “As far as I’m aware there has been no improved bid, Matheus Nunes is still our player, we have a long contract with him and at this moment in time, I fully expect him to be here on September 2.

“The next few days will be key, conversations will take place in private between Matheus and I but I’m sure the situation will be resolved.”

Asked if Nunes, who joined Wolves in a deal worth £42m from Sporting Lisbon last summer, had needed to effectively go on strike, O’Neil continued: “You never do but players do – you see it all over the country, I saw it when I was playing and you saw it in recent transfer windows.

“It won’t change how the club deals with any bids or any situations.

“He definitely didn’t need to do what he did and there’s a way to deal with these situations, but I’ll keep most of my thoughts private for when I speak with Matheus.

“I will save my opinions until I’ve spoken to him and cleared everything up and decide what I think of the situation.

“I’m excited because I’m still convinced that come September 2 this squad will be in a better place than it was last week.”

Wolves are close to completing a deal for Paraguayan teenager Enso Gonzalez and O’Neil hinted there could be a busy finish to what has been a largely frustrating transfer window.

He said: “I think we’re well prepared. There’s been some really good work go on, that I’ve seen and helped with over the last couple of weeks so we’re able to do some bits and pieces and respond if things move.

“So we’re well ‘prepped’ for the next few days. Does that mean there are going to be loads of players arriving? Possibly, possibly not.

“But we’re as well prepared as we can be for the end of the transfer window.”

O’Neil, meanwhile, delivered positive news on Hwang Hee-chan. The forward was forced out of Saturday’s win at Everton at half-time with a hamstring issue but has a chance of featuring in next weekend’s match at Crystal Palace.