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James Collins lavishes praise on 'intelligent' Wolves youngster Luke Cundle

Wolves U23s manager James Collins has heaped praise on Luke Cundle, who returned to action against Birmingham City on Friday evening.

The team had been struggling for results of late, but got back to winning ways against the Blues, with goals coming from Ollie Tipton and Cundle.

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City actually went down to 10 men inside nine minutes, with Duncan Idehen receiving his marching orders.

Wolves conceded from the spot, with Hugo Bueno fouling Kieran Wakefield in the penalty area.

But Wolves scored a penalty of their own, with Tipton converting after a handball by Renedi Masampu.

There was then a moment of real quality, with Cundle curling an unstoppable effort inside the far post after a nice one-two with substitute Jack Hodnett.

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It was a goal worthy of winning the game, and afterwards Collins piled on the praise for his captain.

He said: “We got a bit of a break for the penalty, and then Cundle scored a brilliant goal. I thought he was magnificent all night, showed his quality tonight and ran the game.

“I was delighted to have him back because he’s ready for that step up. Whether that’s with our first-team or whether that’s a loan, because watching him out there, I thought he was magnificent.

“He’s got an outstanding brain and drives the game, he runs the game and dictates it which is a great skill. He’s intelligent, makes good decisions, can attack and defend and when you first see him, you wonder whether he could be a Premier League player because he’s slight and small.”

Collins’ rave review of Cundle is very exciting

Cundle is very clearly one of the brightest prospects at Wolves.

The starlet has actually made Bruno Lage’s first-team bench for each of the past seven Premier League matches in a row.

That would suggest he might not be that far away from getting more minutes.

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So far he has made two appearances for the first-team – a one-minute cameo against Nottingham Forest earlier this season in the EFL Cup, and he also featured briefly against Reading in the same competition in 2019/20.

Judging by this latest assessment from Collins, Cundle may well soon be ready to play senior football.