Julen Lopetegui praised Toti Gomes after the defender grabbed his first goal for Wolves against Aston Villa yesterday.
Wanderers ran out 1-0 winners against the Villans to all but guarantee their Premier League safety.
Wolves are now on 40 points and 10 points clear of relegation.
It was not Wolves’ best display at Molineux. But a strong defensive performance ensured victory against Unai Emery’s side.
And it was Toti who grabbed the only goal of the game, rising high to meet Ruben Neves’ corner in the first-half.
It was a superb header from the 24-year-old, with the ball going in off the crossbar.
Toti was robbed of a goal against Liverpool in the FA Cup back in January. There were no camera angles to show Matheus Nunes’ positioning, after he had been ruled offside. The on-field decision therefore had to be upheld, and goalscorer Toti was deprived of a first goal.
But yesterday was Toti’s day, and there were no technological errors to take the moment away from him this time.
Toti has seen quite a lot of minutes lately for Wolves, having had to be very patient in the first half of the season.
He is seemingly a firm favourite of Lopetegui right now, and the manager heaped more praise on him after the game.
He said (via Wolves official): “It’s one of his strengths and he makes the team stronger. But it was not only about this. I think he’s played well and he’s been as good as the rest of his teammates.”
Toti Gomes deserved his moment in the spotlight against Aston Villa
What a header it was from Toti and what a brilliant past couple of months he’s had.
He has gone from bit-part player to regular, and has now been praised by Lopetegui publicly several times.
It’s fantastic to see him finally getting to play for Wolves.
By many accounts, there aren’t too many players in the Wolves squad who work harder than he does.
The fact his hard work is now being rewarded is so good to see, and hopefully that first Portugal cap will be coming late this year.
Roberto Martinez has admitted he’s been watching Toti. For him to turn out for his country would be absolutely brilliant.