Wolves have been rocked by the news that Nelson Semedo will not play again this season – but Bruno Lage could find an unlikely replacement in youngster Dexter Lembikisa.
The 28-year-old picked up a hamstring injury during the defeat to Brighton last weekend, and it appears it is fairly serious.
The defender took to Instagram last night to confirm that his season is now done.
It is the second hamstring injury Semedo has picked up this term.
He sustained his first against Arsenal back in February, and was on the sidelines for around a month.
His appearance against Brighton on Saturday was only his second game back after that injury, and it is a real shame for both the player and Wolves given the form he’s been in generally this season.
Bruno Lage must now determine the best way to proceed.
The favourite to replace Semedo will be Jonny Castro Otto, who did extremely well in his absence last time.
But Jonny can obviously play on the left too.
One wonders if Lage may look at other options for the right. Ki-Jana Hoever could well get a chance to prove himself again, having not featured since the manager gave him a public dressing down after the game with Crystal Palace.
But perhaps Lage may also consider bringing in someone who has been looking extremely promising for the U23s of late.
Dexter Lembikisa has been enjoying a really solid campaign with James Collins’ side.
The 18-year-old has been a regular fixture this term, making 19 appearances in PL2.
Last night, he featured in the Premier League Cup semi-final against Middlesbrough, and caught the eye once again with some solid defending. He was also a threat.
Dexter Lembikisa could become a wildcard for Lage in Wolves’ final four game
Semedo being out potentially opens a door for Lembikisa.
He is yet to make his first-team debut. The closest he’s come is when he made the bench for the first time for the FA Cup game against Sheffield United back in January.
Lage has shown he is willing to put his faith in the club’s youngsters.
Toti Gomes and Luke Cundle both got their first Premier league starts earlier this season. And Chem Campbell got a chance against Newcastle United last month.
The remaining fixtures for Wolves are very tough. Lage may be a bit reluctant to start throwing in young players.
But Lembikisa is looking like a class-act for the U23s, and Collins praised him earlier this year for his rapid development in recent times.
U18s managed Steve Davis also hailed Lembikisa, saying in February: “He’s a top player. He’s showing in a very short space of time how good and how quickly he can improve and develop. He’s a great example to the other lads.”