Wolves prospect Pedro Neto has been told he is going right to the top of the game and will stay there.
The 19-year-old forward looks set to win more game time with Diogo Jota ruled out of at least the next two games and Patrick Cutrone joining Fiorentina.
Neto scored his first Premier League goal in the 2-1 defeat at Watford on New Year’s Day after being denied by VAR in the 1-0 loss at Liverpool.
The Portuguese youngster has started the last three games and he seems certain to be knocking on the door again when Wolves host Newcastle on Saturday.
Goalkeeper John Ruddy is confident Neto will go right to the pinnacle of the game.
“He’s one of a number in the squad who will get there and stay there and have a real input on football as a whole,” said Ruddy.
“I hope it’s with Wolves for many years to come and I’m sure it will be. There’s no need for them to go and search for anything else.
“We’re looking forward to getting the best years out of them and seeing them progress.
“The enthusiasm they have for the game and willingness to learn and improve is what’s going to take them to the top for a very long time.
“His ability is there for all to see. He just needed someone to back him and the manager’s backed him. His personality is there. He fits in to what we’re building in the squad.”
Ruddy believes Jota will have a job on his hands to get his place back when he’s fit because of Neto’s form.
“We have a small squad but the squad is full of quality so everyone knows they have to be on top form, every game, every session to make sure they stay in the team,” said the 33-year-old.
“Jota and Pedro are no different and it’s right throughout the squad we have competition for places – Ruben Vinagre for example.
“He’s been frustrated by his lack of game time but he’s another one who’s come in and fitted in seamlessly to what the manager is building and what we’re creating as players.”
Neto is enjoying his longest run of action and Ruddy reckons the former Lazio youngster is adapting quickly to the demands of the Premier League as he makes up for lost time.
“He’s not played as much as he would have liked in the last few years,” added the former Norwich shotstopper. “But now he’s played three games in a short space now so he’s a bit tired, shall we say.
“He’s a great lad as well. He fits into the dressing room perfectly and his performances over the last few games have been exemplary.
“He’s shown what he’s about as a player and what he brings to the team. He’s one of a few in the squad. I’m the old man of the team. We’ve got all these youngsters running around – it’s great.”