Ki-Jana Hoever, 20, had to be substituted through injury in the 25th minute of Wolves' 2-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace; Bruno Lage accused the right-back of not being prepared; Lage: "I have too many kids in my team that sometimes don't work the way they should work"
Sunday 6 March 2022 07:08, UK
Wolves head coach Bruno Lage says he won't "waste time with guys who don't work hard" after blaming an injury to Ki-Jana Hoever on the right-back not being prepared.
The 20-year-old, starting only his second game since December after keeping his place in the absence of Nelson Semedo, had to be substituted in the 25th minute of their 2-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace with what looked like a hamstring strain.
Wolves were outclassed by Palace after first-half goals from Jean-Philippe Mateta and a Wilfried Zaha penalty dented their top-four hopes and inflicted a third consecutive league defeat.
Boss Lage was furious with his team's display but took aim at his younger players in the wake of Hoever's injury which was blamed on the Dutchman's lack of preparation.
"Ki is a good example of the young kids, they want everything to happen [now]," said Lage in his post-match press conference. "When you are out and your teammate is playing, and you are not training at the intensity, you are not preparing yourself and after, when you have a chance, these kinds of things happen.
"I have too many kids in my team that sometimes don't work the way they should work. They do not prepare the way they should prepare and after, when they come inside [the team], these kinds of things happen.
"When they are in training they are thinking a lot, 'Oh I'm not playing', and I said to them in the first day when I started, 'We are here, you need to continue to work. The first target is to work and improve.'
"Injuries can happen, but this one happened because he was not prepared because Ki sometimes doesn't work in the same intensity. This warning is not only for Ki, it's for all the kids we have in our team.
"They need to understand that I don't waste time with guys who don't work hard every day to improve. I can see guys who are 35 years old and they don't play, like Joao (Moutinho) didn't (at West Ham), and they are trying to win balls in the air, 'Hey, look at me, I'm here'."
Follow every Wolves game in the Premier League this season with our live blogs on the Sky Sports website and app, and watch match highlights for free shortly after full-time.
Want the Wolves latest? Bookmark our Wolves news page, check out Wolves' fixtures and Wolves' latest results, watch Wolves goals and video, keep track of the Premier League table and see which Wolves games are coming up live on Sky Sports.
Get all this and more - including notifications sent straight to your phone - by downloading the Sky Sports Scores app and setting Wolves as your favourite team.
Hear the best Premier League reaction and expert analysis with the Essential Football and Gary Neville podcasts, keep up-to-date with our dedicated Transfer Centre, follow the Sky Sports social accounts on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube, and find out how to get Sky Sports.