Wolves top scorer Raul Jimenez has revealed they worked on Ruben Neves’s goal against Villa all week in training.
Neves opened the scoring in the 2-1 Molineux win with a superb first-time shot steered into the bottom corner of the net after Joao Moutinho fooled the visitors into thinking he was going to cross his free kick into the box, instead squaring to his Portugal international team-mate to fire home from the edge of the D.
“We’ve been working for the whole week to get those types of goals – it’s just training in the middle of the week and now we’ve put it to practice and it was a fantastic goal,” said Jimenez.
“Everyone made the movements at the time when we were supposed to do it, and it’s a fantastic goal we deserved.”
Jimenez himself grabbed the vital second goal to reward Wolves’ dominance after Matt Doherty and Adama Traore had hit the bar while Jimenez twice went close.
The Mexican striker revealed he sensed the goal was coming. “I kept trying the whole game and I knew from one of those balls in the area, I was going to score,” he added.
“I’m very happy to help the team to have the three points.
“We needed it! We tried throughout the whole match to score more goals to finish the game. At the end it was difficult for us, but we know anything can happen.
“Throughout the whole match we did good things, we had the ball, and I think it’s a well-deserved win.
“Sometimes you think it’s not going to happen; when you have the ball in the area and you don’t score it makes you think ‘this is when I have to score’.”
Jimenez now has 13 goals this season in all competitions, and only Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling with 14 has netted more among Premier League players.
It also made his tally five in six matches and he unselfishly paid tribute to his Wolves colleagues.
“I’m very happy. It’s been a very good moment for me, but without my team-mates this is not possible,” said Jimenez.
“I have to be grateful for them because without them, I would not have moments like this.
“Every one of us are very important within the team, how we play, and we all feel good.”
Victory moved Wolves up to eighth and extended Wolves’ run to 10 unbeaten in the Premier League and Europa League while it’s five without defeat at Molineux.
Wolves return from the international break with a trip to AFC Bournemouth a week on Saturday and Jimenez stressed they must keep their momentum going.
“Now we have a break, but we need to continue like this when we return to the team as we know we have to keep doing the same to be fighting in the league,” he said.
“It’s very important for us to be up there. We’ve had a bit of a slow beginning – a lot of drawn matches – but now we’re making good football, making important things on the pitch and in the last couple of matches we have done very, very well.”
Wolves have already played 24 games this season – nine more than Sunday’s opponents Villa and many other rivals in the Premier League.
Jimenez says the busy schedule is a price to pay for their success and they wouldn’t have it any other way.
“It’s been difficult this season because we are in a lot of matches; we were in the qualifiers of the Europa League now we were playing three different tournaments in this last period, but we knew this is what we want,” he said.
“We want to play, we want to be in the Europa League, we want to be fighting in the Premier League, so this is how big teams and big players do it, and we have chances to be like that.”