Conor Coady relishing Wolves' Premier League and Europa League dual focus
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By Mathieu Wood
Last Updated: 19/08/19 6:10pm
Conor Coady is relishing the opportunity to captain a Wolves side on both domestic and European fronts for the first time in nearly 40 years.
Wolves are competing in Europe for the first time since 1980 - when Emlyn Hughes was the captain - after finishing seventh in the league last season, with a playoff against Torino between them and reaching the group stage.
Wolves are already five games into their campaign, having played four matches in Europa League qualifying, and Coady has been an ever-present since they were promoted to the top flight.
Liverpool-born Coady is expected to play his 71st consecutive match for the club when Wolves host Manchester United on Monday, live on Sky Sports.
"To play any game for this football club is special but to do it for 70 consecutive games is nice," Coady told Sky Sports News, after Wolves' 4-0 second-leg victory against Pyunik in the Europa League.
"Playing in Europe is a special thing for everyone, so it is something we are really enjoying at the minute and we want to keep it going."
Wolves began their league campaign with a goalless draw against Leicester last weekend - the first occasion this season the squad were tested by the quick turnaround from playing European football and then switching to a domestic focus.
Coady believes the club have adjusted well to the demands, which proved too challenging for Burnley last season as they missed out on qualifying for the group stage.
"It's been a fantastic start. It has been different because we have been in for a lot of weeks," he added.
The good thing is we have used the Europa League games well to prepare ourselves for the Premier League. I believe we have done it the right way.
"We came in really early but we knew at the time it was needed with what was coming ahead of us.
"The good thing is we have used the Europa League games well to prepare ourselves for the Premier League. I believe we have done it the right way."
Manchester United are next for Wolves at Molineux and Coady is aiming to build on the club's recent record against their opponents, who they beat in both of their two meetings at home last season.
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"It's a huge game - everybody knows that. When a team like Manchester United comes to Molineux it is always big," said Coady, who also played in the draw against United at Old Trafford last September.
"We can't really look back at those games last season. We look back at them with fond memories.
"They are a different team now, they have signed some fantastic players. They have got a brilliant manager. We will make sure we train and listen to the manager as much as we can and be ready on Monday."
Wolves are viewed as contenders to threaten the established top six in the Premier League once again after impressing on their return but Coady, just like head coach Nuno Espirito Santo, is not looking to set any targets.
"We listen to the manager on a daily basis. He instils things into us which make sense, so we stick by that," the 26-year-old said.
"If you start looking too far ahead to what you want to do this season, you start putting yourselves under pressure - unnecessary pressure that we don't really need.
"It's a game-by-game mentality at this club. It has been for the last three years since the manager came in and we won't change that now."
Coady added: "We always want to improve. We know how tough the Premier League is.
"All we can do is listen to our manager on a daily basis and improve under him, listen to his ideas because his ideas are brilliant.
"We will never look too far ahead. The next game is Manchester United and we will be looking to go into that to try and give everything we have got to compete and to win."