Wolves lost to Crystal Palace yesterday – and there was another substitute appearance for Sasa Kalajdzic.

Gary O’Neil resisted temptation to start the Austrian, after he scored last Tuesday against Blackpool.

Kalajdzic is currently being managed quite carefully of course, after not long returning from his ACL injury.

Kalajdzic suffered the cruel blow on his debut for the club last season against Southampton.

He did not feature again in 2022/23, with then-manager Julen Lopetegui being forced to leave him out of his updated Premier League squad after the January transfer window.

Two players that know a thing or two about serious injuries are Micah Richards and Theo Walcott, with both expressing their sympathy for the Wolves striker yesterday on Sky Sports.

Micah Richards and Theo Walcott sympathise with Sasa Kalajdzic

Just ahead of kick-off yesterday, there was a little segment on Sky Sports about Kalajdzic.

Crystal Palace v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League
Photo by Tom Dulat/Getty Images

Obviously, he got the late winner against Everton the weekend before.

And so, he was in focus ahead of the game.

Richards said: “It’s horrible. I think we’ve all had knee injuries. It’s such a difficult time training on your own. Not knowing if you’re going to come back the same player.

“But to get the winner against Everton here… that’s just the bit of luck that you need.”

Walcott added: “It’s an upward journey. It is (a dark time as a professional footballer), but it makes you into a really strong character. If you can get back from something like that on your own – you’re battling against yourself in your head every day. I’m pleased for him because I’ve been through that as well. It’s not a nice journey for anyone to face.”

Kalajdzic has made a great start to the new season for Wolves after his adversity

Fans don’t often see what a footballer goes through when they pick up a very serious injury.

Wolves actually did a very good job of highlighting the process with the documentary they made about Kalajdzic’s recovery.

It must be really tough mentally at times.

Crystal Palace v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League
Photo by Wolverhampton Wanderers FC/Wolves via Getty Images

Kalajdzic has already scored two goals for Wolves and that’s fantastic to see.

The £15 million star is still building back from his terrible injury, so to have scored twice already is really encouraging.

Hopefully it will not be long now before he gets a run of starts in the Premier League.

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