Bruno Lage explains Ruben Neves absence & Toti Gomes decision for Wolv…

Ruben Neves misses Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Premier League fixture with Southampton today after testing positive for Covid-19.

Neves, who also contracted the virus last year, has been replaced in the starting line-up by compatriot Joao Moutinho – with Leander Dendoncker also chosen to start in midfield.

Portugal star Neves has been in sensational form for Wolves of late, but he will now self-isolate as per UK Government guidelines.

From Monday people who produce negative tests on day five and six will be able to leave isolation early, meaning Neves could return for next week’s clash at Brentford.

Dendoncker’s inclusion in midfield, combined with Marcal’s absence, has forced Bruno Lage to hand a surprise debut to rookie defender Tote Gomes – also known as Toti.

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Explaining his decisions, Lage said: “It’s not about just one player, but the dynamic. That’s why I continue with the same system and not put too many players out of position.

“Instead of putting Leander at centre-back or another player, or change the system, I prefer to give consistency (to the players).

“I’ve put Toti in the team. He’s been working with us the last associate of weeks. He’s the only central defender we have, him and Dion (Sanderson) – but I go for him.

“Ruben is important for us, but I think more important is the work we are doing together. We must try not to miss Ruben, Marcal or another meaningful player, that’s why we work every day.”

READ: Lowdown on Toti Gomes as Bruno Lage hands debut to Wolves rookie



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