Ryan Bennett is ready for a Wolves recall again after rediscovering his top form, according to Nuno Espirito Santo.
The 29-year-old centre back appeared as a late substitute in Wednesday’s 2-0 win against West Ham and is vying for a start in Sunday’s trip to Brighton after recovering from a back injury.
Bennett has only started three of the last 16 games in all competitions, largely because of a back injury that forced him off early on in the 1-1 draw at home to Southampton. His only two other starts in that spell have been in the Carabao Cup.
Head coach Nuno has preferred Leander Dendoncker at right-sided centre back for the last seven games.
But the Molineux gaffer says the former Norwich stopper is firmly back in contention for the trip to the south coast.
“He was involved coming off the bench against West Ham and is getting better, recovering his top form,” said Nuno.
“He works today, he will work tomorrow, then we will decide. It’s no good to have players out – everybody has to be inside of the squad.”
With Willy Boly out injured long term, Romain Saiss has been operating at left-sided centre back, apart from his one-match ban against Sheffield United.
The team has responded with eight unbeaten games out of nine since the Frenchman has been sidelined, the Carabao Cup defeat at Aston Villa being the only loss.
Nuno stressed he is still assessing his options as to who will play in defence against Brighton.
“Romain didn’t play against Sheffield. It’s not a question of beneficial, but it happened,” he said.
“We had to find a solution to replace him, Max (Kilman) did it.
“We decided against West Ham it would be Romain and we still have to decide who’s going to play against Brighton.
“But the important thing is to balance the squad. Even if a player is not involved, he has to train because the idea is everyone is on the same level – physically, technically and tactically.
“If a player cannot be involved in a game, he has to train – it’s not that he’s going home, he trains on the day of the game and prepares himself for what’s coming next.”