'We can understand Nunes' ambition without forgiving his method'

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Wolves expert view banner

Mike Taylor, BBC Radio WM

Cynicism is a drag, so let us leave open the idea that there is a more innocent explanation for the absence of Matheus Nunes from training with Wolves in recent days. Maybe it is a one-man campaign against the power of public relations in sport, as it is not easy to put a positive spin on the headlines reporting his apparent downing of tools. But while we wait for his side of the story to emerge, we can understand his ambition without forgiving his method.

The possibility of moving from a potential relegation scrap to the pre-eminent European club of the moment might well turn all but the most dedicated. There are, as Gary O'Neil put it diplomatically on Tuesday, "ways you should and shouldn't deal with things". But the Matheus story, as so far presented, is hardly unique, which suggests that such a view is becoming unfashionable at this level. Perhaps those of us who will never be in such a position cannot really understand, but it is a sad thought.

Anyway, we are now into the next act of a drama that feels familiar, the one where the buying club is "willing to walk away". Wolves may have to choose between principles and pragmatism. While they would win many admirers for standing their ground, there is a persuasive case for taking the money.

That case does rest on them being prepared to recycle it, and Matt Cooper of Talking Wolves made a strong point on this page on Tuesday when he noted that the club may find it hard to drive a bargain. But turning a profit on a player who did not always live up to his high billing, and using it to add more options to a squad of limited depth, could be a good outcome.

A refreshing antidote to all that in recent days has come in the adventures of Sasa Kalajdzic, whose last year reads like a film script, so no wonder Wolves themselves have made one about him called "False Start". Well, he is up and running now, and spending a couple of minutes in his company after his winning goal at Everton, it was easy to understand why so many people at Wolves are rooting for him.

"I tried to wait for the perfect moment," he explained, having scored his first goal and announced impending fatherhood at the same time. "How you say: two flies with one clap?" We didn't say that round here before, Sasa, but I think we do now.

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