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In profile: Wolves' young guns heading to China

By Tim Spiers | Wolves | Published: | Last Updated:

Nuno Espirito Santo has called up a number of promising young starlets for Wolves' trip to China next week.

Clockwise from top left; Ed Francis, Taylor Perry, Christian Marques, Dion Sanderson, Hong Wan, Luke Cundle, Theodor Corbeanu, Terry Taylor

With a few senior players absent, the teenagers have a huge opportunity to impress.

Wolves correspondent Tim Spiers spoke to academy boss Scott Sellars to get the lowdown on the new faces in Nuno's squad.

Dion Sanderson

Position: Centre-back/right wing-back

Age: 19

Nationality: English

Dion Sanderson (©AMA SPORTS PHOTO AGENCY)

Sellars: "He grew into it for the under-23s during the second half of last season after an injury.

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"I watched him last week for the first-team against Huddersfield and he had a really good game.

"He's very aggressive, a front-foot player who can pass it and move it around well.

"He's a local lad, been with us many years and whenever we've challenged him he's embraced it.

"That's a big part of being a pro. We put him into a Birmingham Senior Cup game as a 16-year-old and he was the best player on the pitch – he's got that type of personality."

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"He's related to Tessa Sanderson so has a sporting background. We haven't tried him out for long throws yet though!"

Christian Marques

Position: Centre-back

Age: 16

Nationality: Swiss (with Portuguese citizenship)

Christian Marques (pic courtesy of Wolves)

"We signed Christian earlier this year after watching him for a long time. There was a lot of interest in him and we were delighted to get him.

"He's only a first-year scholar, aged 16, but he's been excellent.

"He plays the middle of the three like Conor Coady and is a good talker, a good leader and an excellent passer – his passing range is top.

"He speaks Portuguese, Nuno's been really impressed with him and he's training with the first-team every day at the moment. Nuno's really pleased with how he's progressing.

"He's got work to do physically as he's only 16 but in terms of his football and attitude, he's excellent and he's settled in culturally. I think he speaks five languages so that's not an issue for him.

"We've got high hopes for him."

Terry Taylor

Position: Central midfielder

Age: 18

Nationality: Welsh (born in Scotland)

Terry Taylor (© AMA SPORTS PHOTO AGENCY)

"Terry had a good season with the under-18s, at one point we were looking to send him to Jumilla because we thought he'd gone past under-18 level but the under-23s were pushing for the league and we didn't want to change the team.

"Then from that point he kicked on, went to Marbella with the first-team, got picked for the Wales squad and we had fantastic feedback from them.

"He's a calm footballer who really suits the football we play at the club. He's very composed and very much a holding midfielder.

"He's a good talker and you notice that nothing fazes him.

"We brought him in from Aberdeen and his biggest strength is his personality, which doesn't change when he's with the first-team.

"He can play holding midfield or attacking midfield, but that Ruben Neves role suits him. He's a great long passer who can switch the game quickly."

Ed Francis

Position: Centre-back/central midfielder

Age: 19

Nationality: English

Ed Francis (pic courtesy of Wolves)

"I've known Ed since he was nine or 10 when I was at Manchester City. He played in the same team as Phil Foden and came here last season and played an important part in the under-23's success.

"He plays in the middle of the back three or central midfield and is an excellent passer from the back, he plays through the thirds and gets in behind teams.

"He's a good character, he's 19 and we'll probably keep him with us a bit longer and then look to loan him out after Christmas.

"He's mature, very bright and a bit more experienced, he had a loan out in Holland when he was with Man City."

Taylor Perry

Position: Attacking midfielder

Age: 17

Nationality: English

Taylor Perry (pic courtesy of Wolves)

"Taylor's a local boy who's been with us a long time. He's a good footballer, a bit of an all-rounder in midfield in that he can get forward, can finish and gets up and down the pitch really well.

"He was flying last year before picking up an ankle injury in the Youth Cup which held him back a little bit.

"Again, he's looking really good in training and is a player we've really seen progress over the years.

"We want him to play in the under-23s this year and hopefully train with the first-team.

"He's got a great Black Country accent, a proper local lad!"

Luke Cundle

Position: Central midfielder

Age: 17

Nationality: English

Luke Cundle (pic courtesy of Wolves)

"Luke's been with us since 13, he's a Warrington boy.

"He's not the biggest but he's a really intelligent, proactive player who rarely gives the ball away.

"He tries to make things happen. He's a confident boy who can play – he had a very strong year in the under-18s and is one who needs a bit more time because of his physicality.

"He'll need a bit of time but he can look at someone like Joao Moutinho and see you don't have to be 6ft 2in to be a top player.

"Nuno really likes how he retains possession and is very calm. He finds solutions to what's going on – as staff we've always seen that potential and we realise the physical aspect will come later."

Hong Wan

Position: Central midfielder

Age: 18

Nationality: English (with Chinese/Malaysian heritage)

Hong Wan (pic courtesy of Wolves)

"Hong joined us this summer, he's settled in really well and looks like he's really enjoying it.

"He's a really good footballer, I think he really suits how the club play. We're looking forward to seeing him progress.

"He's been at a couple of other clubs like Yeovil and Luton, I think sometimes other clubs don't have the money or the time to develop players. Looking at him he needs time to develop physically but in terms of the Wolves style of play it suits him, it's more patient and possession based and it brings the best out of him.

"He controls midfield quite well and solves problems, he's impressed already."

Theodor Corbeanu

Position: Forward

Age: 17

Nationality: Romanian (with Canadian citizenship)

Theodor Corbeanu (pic courtesy of Wolves)

"Theo's a Canadian boy but Romanian by birth. He came in last year and did really well initially to earn himself a contract.

"He's got potential. He's a good one-v-one attacking forward who can beat players and score as well.

"He needs to believe in himself a bit more, but he's got good qualities.

"In the Nuno shape he'll probably play in a front two. He was over in Toronto, had a couple of trials and we had him over to have a look – he played in a game and scored one and made one. That was a good impression, we saw the potential.

"He's a second-year scholar, aged 17, he's lived in Canada most of his life so he can speak great English and has a bit about him.

"He's a good kid who works hard at his football."

Tim Spiers

By Tim Spiers
@tim_spiers_Star

Writes about Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club for a living

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