Wolves youngster Ryan Giles is looking forward to getting fans out of their seats after admitting joining League One Shrewsbury Town on a season-long loan was a ‘no brainer’.
The Telford-born left wing-back and Wolves Academy graduate made his first-team debut in the 2-2 draw at Shrewsbury in the FA Cup fourth round in January. Wolves rate Giles highly – he is 12 months into a four-year contract, keeping him at Molineux until 2022, he went on pre-season tour with the first team last summer and was voted Academy player of the year for 2017-18.
Now he links up with former Wolves captain and Shrewsbury boss Sam Ricketts, as well as former Molineux favourites Dave Edwards and Ethan Ebanks-Landell at Montgomery Waters Meadow.
“I want to do well at Shrewsbury Town. I’ll always try to bring positivity to get supporters out of their seats, I want to bring assists and I want to show them what I can do,” Giles told www.shrewsweb.co.uk
Wolves Academy manager Scott Sellars said: “Everyone who watches him sees his pace and fantastic crossing ability on the move. I think his defensive game has improved massively over the last 12 months. He’s had his exposure with the first-team, he’s made his debut, so he’s progressing really well.”
The connection between Ricketts and Giles was made during the former’s time coaching at Wolves Academy and was key to the move.
“I’ve been at Wolves since I was seven years old and progressed all the way through,” added Giles. “I met Sam at Wolves and he is a fantastic coach and a great role model both on and off the pitch.
“When the possibility of the move came around it was a no brainer and I’m really looking forward to getting going and hopefully bring in the right results.”
Giles played a starring role in Rob Edwards’ Wolves Under-23 side that won the Premier League 2 Division 2 title last season, playing 19 times at left wing-back or further forward. The 19-year-old netted against Albion and at Lincoln City in the Checkatrade Trophy, as well as laying on crucial assists.
He already has other first-team experience in Shropshire, helping AFC Telford avoid relegation from National League North in spring 2018, scoring twice in nine appearances with seven assists.
But the connection with Ricketts is seen as key to his development.
Sellars added: “Sam did a big sell on wanting ‘Gilo’ and explained how he’d knit into how they wanted to play and how he fits in as a wing-back, so for his continued development I think it will be excellent.
“To be involved in a first-team every day is important. He’s got to cement a place in the team – there’s no guarantees, but to be in that environment is the perfect next step for him.
“From our point of view, it’s not far away for him, so he can live at home. Sam coached in our Academy, so knows ‘Gilo’ and we know what Sam is like as a coach and how he wants to play, so it all makes sense and is hopefully the start of a good relationship between the two clubs.”
The loan is the latest such move between the clubs, with Wolves allowing Shrewsbury to take Academy graduates such as Dominic Iorfa and Niall Ennis on a similar basis in recent years.
Ricketts was delighted to seal the move, which has been on the cards for several months. “I’m delighted to get ‘Gilo’ in and he’s a player I’ve known for a long time through my coaching at Wolves,” said the Town boss, who skippered Wolves to League One title glory in 2013-14.
“I’ve followed his progression really well over the last couple of years and it is a really good acquisition for the club. He made his Wolves debut last season in the FA Cup against us so Town fans have had the chance to see him in action.
“The fact Wolves have let him come here speaks volumes of our club because he is a player who is very highly regarded at Wolves and they have big hopes for him.”
Discussions on the deal have been going on for a while but Wolves wanted Giles to join in their first week of pre-season training.
“In principle, the move started months ago but because he is such an asset for Wolves, it took a little while,” added Ricketts.
“We are delighted to get him here and the deal over the line but the biggest thing is he is desperate to be here and delighted to have finally signed.”
Town have been back in pre-season for just over a week so the deal has been completed in good time to get Ryan integrated into the squad early.
“We want to get all our players in as early as we can when possible”, said Ricketts. “Unfortunately because he was with Wolves that wasn’t the case, but the important thing is he joined us in good time.
“It allows Ryan to get a really good pre-season with us and come to Portugal next week which is really important.”
Giles has played predominantly at left wing back but can also operate at wide left midfield and also as a left-sided forward. Wolves see him developing at wing back and Ricketts sees him operating in that position in Shropshire.
“‘Gilo’ as a kid coming through was predominantly a left winger but the way Wolves play they have converted him to a wing back”, said Ricketts.
“He suits the way that we are trying to play and will come in and give us a good option in that left wing back role.
“We are slowly putting the pieces in place and taking our time to get the right players and right characters in place and ‘Gilo’ certainly fits that bill.”
After being used to playing 20-odd games a season at Under-23s level, Ricketts suggested Giles might not be ready to play week-in, week-out in League One.
“Is Ryan ready for 60 games at this level? Possibly not, so we will have to keep an eye on that, but he is an exciting young player,” he told www.shrewsweb.co.uk
“He is hungry and has a brilliant attitude to learn and develop and wants to be successful.”
Giles however aims to become a regular in the Town team. “I’m looking to play as many games as I can, I’m still young and still learning but that is the aim,” he said.
“I’m very happy to be here and the move has been on the horizon for a while now. I’m now looking forward to getting in with the boys and looking forward to August 3.”
Giles is relishing the chance to show what he can do at left wing back in blue and amber.
“I was always known through the Academy ranks as an out and out left-winger but last year they wanted to try me in the left wing back role”, he said. “I found that move really well and have continued to work on that role. There have been a lot of positives and negatives during that time but it’s what you have to do to develop and to push yourself.
“I’m playing as a wing back at the moment and really enjoying it. I’m still learning every single day and coming here is another stage to show what I can do.”
Giles made his Wolves debut last season at Shrewsbury in the Cup when the League One side gave the Premier League outfit a scare by taking a 2-0 lead before forcing a replay and he admits he was taken with the club then.
“When we came to Shrewsbury they were on fire that day and I was really, really impressed with what I saw”, he said. “The atmosphere and the fans that day was electric and Shrewsbury brought their A game that day.
“When the possibility of the move came around I thought to myself ‘I played in that game and saw what they can do’.
“I spoke to the gaffer about how they want to play this year and I can see the potential here and that is another reason to come here.”