Nuno Espirito Santo expecting tough test against Paul Heckingbottom’s Leeds

Leeds United

Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo is expecting another close encounter with Leeds boss Paul Heckingbottom on Wednesday at Elland Road.

Nuno’s Sky Bet Championship leaders needed a stoppage-time goal to snatch all three points against Barnsley at Molineux when Heckingbottom was in charge of them back in September.

Wolves then had to settle for a goalless draw at Oakwell in January before Heckingbottom quit Barnsley to take charge of Leeds early last month.

‘Against Barnsley we felt it was tough, at home and away,’ Nuno told Wolves’ official website.

‘Paul is a good manager. He has his own ideas. I think he’s trying them with new players and what we expect is a tough game because Leeds have good players.

‘At the moment it’s not good, the results, but the quality is there. They have a good manager and it’s going to be tough.

‘We will have to be at our best to achieve what we want. The competition is difficult.’

Wolves will bid to halt a three-game winless run and extend their six-point advantage at the top of the table, while Leeds have won just one of their five matches since Heckingbottom replaced Thomas Christiansen.

‘The table doesn’t mean anything when you face an opponent,’ Nuno added.

‘There is quality and intensity in the games, from every team, especially when they play against us.’

Heckingbottom feels the timing of Wolves’ visit is ideal as his players look to bounce straight back from last week’s disappointing 3-0 defeat at Middlesbrough.

‘I think so,’ the 40-year-old told a press conference. ‘(Wolves) are the best team in the league so far, a big crowd, and a big atmosphere.

‘There is no reason why you wouldn’t be 100 per cent up for this game and excited about it. It’s one of the games you would love to be playing in.

‘I said these first six games against teams above us would give us a great indication of where we are and where we stand.

‘We’ve competed well in some games but we were found wanting against MIddlesbrough.’

Pablo Hernandez could return to contention for Leeds after a groin injury, while Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves is still suspended.


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