By Mark Walker, PA
Wolves boss Bruno Lage expects Morgan Gibbs-White to play a key role this season after the club rejected another bid from Nottingham Forest for the midfielder.
Newly-promoted Forest have reportedly made a third offer worth up to £35million for Gibbs-White, who spent last season on loan at Sheffield United.
Lage, whose side launch their Premier League campaign at Leeds on Saturday, said: “We reject. He’s an important player for me and for the dynamic. We are building for the future of Wolves.
“We reject because he’s an important player for us. He feels important also, he is happy. The way he’s played and the way he’s worked every day in training showed me that.
“So when you have this connection between manager and player and also the player with his team-mates, everything is good.
“We want the player with us. He is fit and motivated to do his best.”
Lage is hopeful of completing several new signings before the transfer window closes on September 1 after adding just one player to his squad since steering Wolves to a 10th-placed finish in his first season in charge.
Republic of Ireland defender Nathan Collins joined from Burnley for a reported £20.5million last month and Lage urged fans to be patient.
“Yes, I’m concerned about that, of course,” the Portuguese said. “Especially next season with five subs. It’s so important to have a strong squad and not just a strong team.
“It’s important for me as a manager to be in the middle of Fosun and (executive chairman) Jeff (Shi) and the love from the fans.
“Maybe this is the time to look back at what has happened at Wolves in the last seven years.
“When they (Fosun) came the club was in the Championship, the squad wasn’t so strong like now and the fans got everything so fast: promoted, two times (in) seventh position, buying players, selling players.
“Maybe it’s time to say I’m a patient manager and the fans should wait and be confident that the work we are doing and the pressure I’m putting on my chairman to create the squad we want.
“Let’s wait until the end of the transfer window to see what happens. Let’s give patience, support and love to the players because I’m confident the next month will be very, very good.”
Lage will be without key players Raul Jimenez and Adama Traore at Elland Road on Saturday.
Mexico striker Jimenez sustained knee and groin injuries in last month’s friendly win against Besiktas and winger Traore is recovering from a hamstring strain. Both hope to return to training later this month.