Julen Lopetegui takes charge at Wolves

Wolves have named Julen Lopetegui as their new manager as the Spanish coach made a dramatic u-turn.

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It has been widely reported that Lopetegui, 56, initially rejected the chance to coach Wolves but the Midlands club persisted and they’ve got who they called their ‘number one choice’ to replace Bruno Lage.

Wolves currently sit in the Premier League’s relegation zone but are just two points from safety. Caretaker boss Steve Davis has gained four points from his five games in charge so far and he will stay in charge for the next two games (home clashes against Brighton and Arsenal) and until Nov. 14 when the World Cup break begins.

Lopetegui, who Wolves wanted to hire back in 2016 when the new ownership took charge, will then arrive to work in the Premier League for the first time.

Speaking to Wolves’ website about Lopetegui, chairman Jeff Shi: “Julen is a top coach, with excellent experience at an elite level of the game, and we are very pleased to have agreed a deal to bring him to Wolves. Since the very beginning, Julen has been our number one choice to manage Wolves, and we look forward to welcoming him and his team when they join us in the coming weeks.”

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What can we expect from Wolves under Lopetegui?

The former Porto, Real Madrid, Spain and Sevilla manager was in charge of the latter for the last three seasons as he won a Europa League title (they beat Wolves in the quarterfinals during the 2019-20 season) and guided the La Liga side to three-straight top four finishes.

However, Sevilla have struggled to start this season and were knocked out of the UEFA Champions League in the group stage as they finished third behind Manchester City and Borussia Dortmund and moved down to the Europa League, while they currently sit 18th in La Liga. Hence Lopetegui moving on.

Lopetegui demands discipline and high-pressing from his team and his coaching style should work well with this Wolves squad. He has been renowned for developing young players and was a key man in guiding Spain’s youth teams from U19 to U21 levels to multiple European titles.

The former Real Madrid, Rayo Vallecano and Barcelona goalkeeper is a very demanding character and wants his teams to play out from the back and prefers a 3-4-3 system. Wolves’ squad is set up well for that formation and this will be very similar to the Nuno Espirito Santo days.

As for Lopetegui, you will remember he was infamously fired by the Spanish national team on the eve of the 2018 World Cup after the Spanish FA found out he had agreed to take charge of Real Madrid, behind their back, following the World Cup.

He is an intriguing addition to the Premier League and one of the best pure coaches in Europe.

Julen Lopetegui takes charge at Wolves originally appeared on NBCSports.com