Wolves transfer targets, rumours and odds: Emergency £15m Hwang replacement needed?

On the eve of Wolves’ Premier League season, the Black Country side suffered a devastating blow when head coach Julen Lopetegui stepped down. But Gary O’Neil has stepped in and done a superb job, with Wolves sitting in a comfortable 11th place.

Wolves exceeded expectations in 2023 – Photo by Icon Sport

Wolves transfer targets, rumours and odds

Hwang Hee-Chan has been outstanding in 2023/24 – Photo by Icon Sport

International duties

But some of Wolves’ biggest stars will be missing for at least a month. Top scorer Hwang Hee-Chan will depart for the Asia Cup, plus Rayan Ait-Nouri and Boubacar Traore will be playing at AFCON. As such, Wolves may be in the market for short term deals to bolster their small squad. Wolves have used just 23 players in the Premier League this season, no side has used fewer.

Safety first approach?

In a recent statement, Wolves Sporting Director Matt Hobbs said “we’ll support him if we can” with regard to manager Gary O’Neil and that “there’s no rush. As big clubs will spend money, other players become available. You don’t want to move too early and better players become available later in the window”. Wolves don’t have lots to spend, but will be opportunistic where they can.

 

Wolves transfer betting tips – Projected odds

Rumoured Wolves signings in January 2024

One of Wolves transfer targets, Hugo Ekitike, in training
Hugo Ekitike has rarely seen the pitch this season – Photo by Icon Sport

Hugo Ekitike – 10/1

21-year-old striker Hugo Ekitike is the forgotten man of Paris Saint-Germain. After scoring 10 goals in 15 starts for Stade Reims in 2021/22 at just 19, Ekitike was snapped up by the perennial French champions as a backup for Kylian Mbappe. But as many a striker will tell you, being a backup can be a curse.

Ekitike has played just nine Ligue 1 minutes this season, and is widely known to be on the market, with Eintracht Frankfurt sniffing around. He could likely be brought in on loan, and would provide a different style of number nine to Matheus Cunha.

Semih Kılıçsoy – 15/1

It’s well known that Wolves are in the market for a striker, but a less well-known target is 18-year-old Besiktas striker Semih Kılıçsoy. The youngster has netted four goals in the Turkish Super Lig in just 3.7 90s, an astonishing return. And according to reports in Turkey, the young Turk is a target for Wolves, and claim the Old Gold have had a bid knocked back already.

One of Wolves transfer targets, Jack Clarke running with the ball
Jack Clarke would be a fine addition to Wolves' wide options – Photo by Icon Sport

Jack Clarke – 20/1

Hwang Hee-Chan has been indispensable to Wolves this season, scoring ten in the Premier League already. But with him missing for a month, and big clubs circling Pedro Neto, Wolves may need wide reinforcement.

Wolves are reportedly interested in Sunderland winger Jack Clarke, who has started to deliver on his teenage promise, with 21 goals and 13 assists since the start of last season. Should Wolves make a sale, Clarke will be high up their shopping list, particularly as it is believed he could be attained for around £15m.

Rumoured Wolves departures in January 2024

Mikel Arteta is a long term admirer of Pedro Neto – Photo by Icon Sport

Pedro Neto – 10/1

Portugal winger Pedro Neto suffered a heartbreaking injury in 2021 that had many wondering if he could recapture the exciting form he showed in his first two seasons in Old Gold. This season he has out those concerns to bed, with seven assists already.

As such, the likes of Arsenal are sniffing around the 23-year-old, as they look to provide a rotational option to Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka, who have looked fatigued at times this season. This is a more likely move in the summer, but should Arsenal cash in on Emile Smith Rowe or Eddie Nketiah, this move could rapidly gain steam.

Max Kilman – 20/1

26-year-old Max Kilman has continued to grow in stature at Wolves this season, and has been a key part of their positive performances. The subject of a £30m bid from Napoli over the summer, the club most recently linked to the English centre-back is West Ham.

With a decent chunk of the £105m they got for Declan Rice still burning a hole in their pocket, David Moyes can throw a substantial sum to test Wolves’ resolve. The Black Country side will be loath to let Kilman go after six seasons, particularly in January, when a replacement will be hard to come by. But if West Ham offer a huge sum, it could happen.


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William Evans

William Evans is a football and politics fanatic. A first-class graduate of UEA's Broadcast and Digital Journalism MA course, he also achieved a first class degree in politics and media studies during his time at UEA.