Wolves journalist Liam Keen has given his thoughts on the future of Joao Moutinho at the club.
Having initially signed for the club in the summer of 2018 from AS Monaco, the Portuguese playmaker has been an integral part of the setup under both Nuno Espirito Santo as well as his successor Bruno Lage, making 149 appearances and racking up 22 assists for the club to go on top of his three goals, and has started all 10 Premier League games this campaign.
However, with his contract set to expire at the end of the season, the club now face the difficult decision of working out whether or not they want to keep him or allow him to leave on a free transfer in the summer.
Speaking on the latest edition of the E&S Wolves podcast, Keen offered his thoughts on what he felt would happen to Moutinho, noting that he believed it would be likely the club would offer him a new deal based on how he has been treated by Wolves boss Lage this season:
“I, right now, would give him another year as well. But I think they will, purely because of where Bruno sees him. We speak to Bruno about him, and you can see this in his team selection as well; of the midfielders that have dropped out so far, it’s been [Ruben] Neves in two games – Southampton and Leeds away, he was dropped out for [Leander] Dendoncker – Moutinho’s continued in the side.
“He massively, massively rates Moutinho. And I can see why, because I think he’s been very good this season, actually. Overall, I’ve been impressed.
“I think he’s invaluable at the moment. Bruno thinks he can go for another four or five years. This is what he’s told me, he thinks he can play for that long.”
TIF Thoughts on Liam Keen’s comments about Joao Moutinho at Wolves…
Is Joao Moutinho the best midfielder currently in Wolves' first-team squad?
Yes, he is incredible
No, we have better
Whilst Moutinho is certainly getting on a bit in terms of age as he now stands at 35, there is no doubt that he’s still an important part of the team at Wolves. Statistically, he ranks in the top three for key passes per game, passes played, pass completion percentage and crosses per game (via WhoScored).
And if he can keep up that level of production, then it really should be a no-brainer for the club to keep him on. Even at his age, he can still be of some use to the club, even if it is on a rotation basis where he plays every other game or whatever the needs of the team demand.
So it should definitely be a route that the club look to go down as they aim to get what they can out of him before he retires.