Romain Saiss hailed Nuno Espirito Santo’s tactics as the key behind Wolves’ comeback win against Slovan Bratislava.
Trailing 1-0 at half-time, boss Nuno tweaked Wolves’ 3-5-2 system by introducing Adama Traore for Patrick Cutrone and pushing Morgan Gibbs-White further forwards as a left-sided attacker in a 3-4-3 formation, and it worked as the visitors forced the Slovan back in their third Europa League Group K tie.
Morocco international Saiss cancelled out Andraz Sporar’s opener with a 25-yard drive before Raul Jimenez sealed Wolves’ fifth straight away win in Europe to preserve their 100 per cent record on their travels on the continent this season.
“I think in the first half we were disorganised – we gave a lot of space to them,” said Saiss to Wolves TV.
“At first he introduced Adama (Traore) to try to give us more width and try to use the space.
“I think it was a lot different because with the speed of Adama, and after (Diogo) Jota, we created a lot of chances and frustrated them.
“In the second half, we were more compact and higher (up the pitch).
“We recovered the ball higher and afterwards, we created a lot of chances and we scored two goals. I think we deserved this result.”
Saiss feels the change to be closer together and higher up the pitch helped as much as the change in personnel.
“I think we would have been better even if we hadn’t changed – the most important thing was we were more compact on the pitch, more organised to not give them the ball easier and deny them a lot of space like they had in the first half,” he added.
“We recovered the ball more because we were higher, so it was easier to attack this team and we did the job, so we are happy.”
Saiss’s goal was his first in Europe for the club and he was delighted with it after netting on his return from a hamstring injury that caused him to miss the Southampton game.
“I recovered the ball and then I saw a lot of space in front of me so I took my chance and I’m lucky to score, so I’m happy,” he said.
“I was injured for almost three weeks. It was hard so I’m happy to be back like this and with no pain. Everything was good for me and the team.”
The game was supposed to be behind closed doors after Uefa ordered a crowd ban after racist chants marred Slovan’s game against PAOK in August, but under the European body’s rules, almost 20,000 under-14s from all over Slovenia were admitted free of charge in a seasonal best attendance of 20,333, including 200 Wolves fans, who were forced to pay £55 a ticket.
Saiss said he preferred thee game to be played with supporters because it created an atmosphere.
“I think it was a good idea instead of playing the game without fans,” said the versatile defender or midfielder.
“It was good to have the children there. It was free for them and the atmosphere was good.
“I hope they enjoyed the game so I think it’s a good idea to invite the children.”
Wolves stretched their unbeaten run to seven games in all competitions and four wins in their last five outings.
Nuno’s side have had the first of four consecutive away games and travel to struggling Newcastle on Sunday (2pm).
Saiss says their focus has already turned to the trip to Tyneside, where the Geordies are unbeaten since the opening day of their season.
“That’s seven games now and we have to continue in this way to get points and go to Newcastle to win the game,” he said.
“We have a tough week coming so we have to be ready. We’ll have a fast recovery and we’ll start preparing for it on Friday because it’s an important game for us.”