Pedro Neto scored for the Wolves U21s today, in his first minutes of football since his ankle injury.
Neto has not featured for the Wolves first-team since early October, when he suffered ligament damage against West Ham United.
Neto had to undergo surgery, and he has been hard at work over the past few months to get back fit again.
Prior to his injury, Neto had struggled for Wolves in 2022/23
He looked razor sharp in pre-season. But then when the new season started, he just couldn’t translate that form.
Neto will likely be itching to get back out there for Wolves because of that start, and minutes are not far away now for the 22-year-old.
Julen Lopetegui actually named Neto on his bench against Southampton at the weekend.
But the manager felt it was not the right moment to give him his return. Wolves were chasing the game and needed players to come on that were match-sharp.
He did, however, make some headlines for charging to join the celebrations when Joao Gomes scored late on.
Today though, he’s been in action for the U21s against Arsenal – and the star managed to get on the scoresheet.
After just seven minutes, Neto cut out a ball intended for the full-back and drove to the penalty area, where he then unleashed a low drive into the far corner.
It was a great finish, and one that was all his own making.
That goal came in front of Lopetegui and sporting director Matt Hobbs. Several first-team squad members, like Raul Jimenez, Ruben Neves and Nelson Semedo, were also watching on.
Dexter Lembikisa added a very similar goal around 10 minutes later, with Wolves holding out for a 2-0 win in the PL2 match.
Great news for Wolves as returning Pedro Neto scores for U21s
Neto’s performance for the U21s today was always going to make for interesting viewing.
It will have been a very frustrating past few months for him.
But he’s ready to return now, and hopefully he will be able to get some first-team minutes against Bournemouth.
He was supposedly fairly sharp today – the Birmingham Mail reported that he showed dazzling footwork in the middle of the park at one point. There were also some ‘moments of rustiness’, which is understandable. He had the freedom to roam, and often swapped flanks with Owen Hesketh.
Lopetegui will no doubt be pleased he managed to get a goal, build his fitness further and come through unscathed.