Joao Moutinho is, in many people’s eyes, one of the best players ever to wear the Wolverhampton Wanderers shirt.

The midfielder joined the club back in 2018, with Wolves paying AS Monaco just £5 million (BBC Sport) for his services.

Since coming to the Black Country, Moutinho has wowed supporters with his grace and technical quality.

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Wolverhampton Wanderers v West Bromwich Albion - Premier League
Joao Moutinho (Photo by Sam Bagnall – AMA/Getty Images)

He does not charge about the pitch, instead hurting teams with his wonderful passing range and wriggling out sticky situations.

Last season was a tough one for the man from Barreiro.

The team struggled as a collective for a variety of reasons, and Moutinho did come in for criticism quite often.

Mostly it was for being unable to affect games and lacking the same big influence he’s had in previous seasons.

But that is to be expected sometimes with a player of his age.

To his credit, he has started the current campaign quite well.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Celta Vigo - Pre-Season Friendly
Joao Moutinho (Photo by Jack Thomas – WWFC/Wolves via Getty Images)

It’s undoubtedly going to be a sad time when he departs, whenever that time comes, but one thing that’s really remarkable about Moutinho – and it doesn’t get mentioned all that much – is just how available he is, and has been, for Wolves.

 

For all the talk about how skilful he is, Moutinho has been extremely durable over the past few years.

Since signing for the club at the age of 31, Moutinho has made a staggering 141 appearances in total.

He has also accrued 24 more caps for Portugal since he started sporting Old Gold.

Moutinho the machine

It’s actually incredible how much football Moutinho, who turns 35 this week, has played in the last few years.

To be able to keep fit like he has, despite being in the twilight of his career, is so impressive.

And this is him operating at the highest level. The Premier League, domestic cups, Europa League, Euro 2020, international qualifiers.

Leicester City v Wolverhampton Wanderers - Premier League
Joao Moutinho (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Football is obviously an extremely intense sport and it doesn’t get spoken about often enough when players are always available for games.

He may no longer be in his prime, but Moutinho deserves huge respect for just how much of himself he has given to the club.

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