Wolves sporting director Matt Hobbs has hailed Dexter Lembikisa, after the youngster signed a new contract with the club.
The starlet has enjoyed a fantastic past couple of days.
He was handed his first start against Liverpool on Saturday in the FA Cup third round clash.
Lembikisa put in a fine performance at right-back, and was praised post-match by Julen Lopetegui.
And this morning the club have announced that he has signed a new contract with the club as a reward for his hard work in becoming a member of the first-team.
It’s a three-and-a-half-year deal, and the club hold an option to extend by a further 12 months.
Hobbs has been speaking about Lembikisa following the contract extension, and has lavished praise on the 19-year-old.
He said: “Your journey doesn’t have to be linear and it can just be down to working to be the best version of yourself you can be. Sometimes that’s good enough, and sometimes it’s not, but what Dexter’s attitude and work ethic gives him is the opportunity to be the best player he can be, and as we’ve seen so far, that’s going to be a real asset for the football club going forward.”
It will be interesting to watch Lembikisa’s journey from here.
He’s made a few appearances for the first-team now.
Of course at the moment, Nelson Semedo and Jonny Castro Otto are both not in particularly good form.
So there may be a chance for Lembikisa to break into the starting XI Hugo Bueno-style.
But the youngster may also head out on loan. There were claims recently that a number of Championship clubs would like to take him for the rest of the season.
Hobbs said on his future: “He’s worked hard under the new manager, and Julen really likes him. He’s been impressed by his athleticism and by his one-on-one defending, which is excellent.
“We’ve got long-term plans for him and he now has a real opportunity. He is part of the first-team group but due to the type of player he is he could stay, learn and develop under the coaching team or has all the attributes to go and have a successful loan for the remainder of the season. Let’s see how the window plays out.
“If we decide not to send him out on loan, it will be because we believe training with this group every day will continue his development.”
Hobbs adds that Lopetegui will play a key role in what happens with Lembikisa.
New Wolves contract is fully deserved for Dexter Lembikisa, as Hobbs discusses youngster’s future
This is great news, and no less than Lembikisa deserves.
He has long been impressing at youth level, and now he is making his mark for the first-team.
The way he played the other night against Liverpool was a sight to behold. He had no business looking as comfortable as he did on his first start at Anfield of all places.
He looks all set to become a top full-back. And there’s no doubt he’ll work his socks off to become that player.
It will be fascinating to see what Lopetegui decides to do. It would be nice to think he could enjoy a similar rise to Bueno.