Wolves pinning hopes on 11-goal-a-season striker

Dylan Tubey

Dylan Tubey

Wolves top goal scorer last season returned an unimpressive six goals. These came from former captain Ruben Neves and an unsettled Daniel Podence, therefore this season Wolves will want an answer upfront in the goal scoring department.

Enter Fabio Silva

The Portuguese striker had a successful time away from Molineux in the 2022/23 season. It began with a loan to Anderlecht where he became a regular starter, starting 17 of his 20 appearances in the Belgium Pro League. Here he netted 11 goals in all competitions including a handful in the Europa Conference League helping Anderlecht qualify and then progress through the knockout rounds of the competition. In the January transfer window there was significant interest in the forward. Wolves wanted to further continue his development overseas, so they decided to terminate his loan at Anderlecht and he was then loaned out to Dutch side PSV.

This loan spell was a very different experience as starts were harder to come by with only five in the league but this did not get in the way of his successes. During this period the striker scored four in the Eredivisie, whilst also contributing in the goals in the Europa League with a Man of the Match performance against Sevilla in the knockout stages. Not only this, he also picked up some silverware by confidently slotting the winning penalty in the KNVB Cup final. In this vastly impressive season he scored 16 goals in all competitions, but now over to you Wolves.

How did he look in Pre-Season?

With lots of teams after his signature this summer he has returned for pre-season. He initially made a cameo and looked full of energy and helped create the penalty for Wolves’ equaliser. This was followed by a start at Molineux against newly promoted Luton where he played alongside freshly fit Sasa Kalajdzic. The two strikers combined fantastically, having lots of clear-cut chances but were very unfortunate not to score. It seemed like old woes were back at Molineux with strikers struggling to convert. However, in the final pre-season game against Stade Rennes it was due to be a hard test after the French side had comfortably beaten West Ham and Nottingham Forest before visiting Molineux. Wolves were victorious, winning 3-1. 

Fabio Silva was introduced at half time and had a large involvement in the 2nd goal. Matheus Nunes ran at the opposition defence and slipped it into Fabio Silva who nonchalantly left the ball for Joao Gomes who placed the ball past the goalkeeper.

What role will Fabio Silva play this season?

Despite the uncertainty around Silva’s future he has stated in an interview with the Express and Star “If I do stay I will give 100 percent” and then in an interview with Wolves he claims “My confidence is more than 100 percent because I feel happy, I feel the love from the fans and I feel the love from everyone with me in the training ground”. Unfortunately for Wolves it is hard to be certain the young Portuguese will stay at the club due to the need to sell this summer to avoid FFP implications.

Hopefully, it can be seen that this newly confident striker in a Wolves shirt could be a huge success this season and give the new manager (if it seems to be Gary O’Neil) a tough decision to make on his team selection this season. 

Impressive performances from Matheus Cunha in pre-season has seen the Brazilian start more games, but a partnership with Sasa Kalajdzic playing off the target man as an advanced forward could be seen as an effective forward line that can hopefully create a flurry of goals for Wolves upfront. This is a void which they have struggled to fill since Raul Jimenez’ fantastic season in 19/20.