Lopetegui backs Jose Sa to bounce back after mistake against Manchester City
Wolverhampton Wanderers Training Session
Photo by Jack Thomas - WWFC/Wolves via Getty Images

Lopetegui backs Jose Sa to bounce back after mistake against Manchester City

Julen Lopetegui has backed Jose Sa to improve his form, after he made a mistake in yesterday’s 3-0 defeat to Manchester City.

Wanderers were comfortably beaten by the Premier League champions.

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Erling Haaland scored a hat-trick for the home side, and Wolves just didn’t really have any kind of answer.

Lopetegui seemingly wanted to hit City on the counter, opting for Hwang Hee-chan, Adama Traore and Raul Jimenez in attack.

But there were precious few opportunities to do that. And Lopetegui hauled all three forwards off at half-time.

Haaland scored from the penalty spot to give City a 2-0 lead, after he’d headed his side in front in the first-half.

And then the Norwegian couldn’t believe his luck as Sa played a pass straight to Riyad Mahrez, who squared for his teammate for an easy finish.

It was a really poor ball from Sa, whose form ha taken a worrying dive recently.

It followed the goal which Harvey Elliott scored for Liverpool in the FA Cup replay, in which Sa’s positioning was very questionable.

Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

After the game with City, Lopetegui backed the 29-year-old to bounce back from his error.

He said (Express & Star): “We want to take good decisions.

“Sometimes the good decision is to play long and sometimes it’s to play short.

“We don’t want to take risks to suffer a goal but sometimes you have to build the play, by playing short.

“Of course, we need to do it better. It’s not about playing short or long, it’s about making good decisions. We have to improve all of this. This kind of mistake happens to all players and in this case we have to help Jose to improve and be able to overcome this situation. I am sure he will do better.”

Jose Sa must improve ball-playing ability, as Lopetegui backs star after mistake against Manchester City

Sa will not need telling about his mistake against City.

But he must now improve his ability in possession.

Lopetegui seems very keen to have Wolves playing out from the back. It’s high risk, high reward strategy.

Photo by Jack Thomas – WWFC/Wolves via Getty Images

You’ve got to have the players to do it, otherwise you get instances like Sa’s error against City.

Hopefully it was just a one-off lapse from Sa and we won’t be seeing anything like it again.