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Who has been Wolves' player of the season?

The Sports Mole team select who they believe has been Wolverhampton Wanderers' player of the 2019-20 season - will it be Raul Jimenez, Adama Traore or someone else?

After such an impressive first season back in the top flight, there was always the danger that 2019-20 could prove to be an anticlimax of sorts for Wolverhampton Wanderers.

The prospect of them succumbing to 'second-season syndrome' looked unlikely considering the quality in their squad, but a winless run of six games to start the new Premier League campaign suggested that they may find things more difficult this time around as they attempted to juggle European commitments too.

However, Nuno Espirito Santo's side soon turned their form around and entered the coronavirus shutdown sitting sixth in the Premier League table, just two points adrift of a fifth-place spot which as things stand would be good enough to secure Champions League football next term.

The Europa League still provides another possible route into the Champions League too with Wolves in pole position to reach the quarter-finals in another memorable campaign.

Here, the Sports Mole team select who they believe has been Wolves' player of the season so far.



Barney Corkhill, Editor: Raul Jimenez

The mighty Raul Jimenez celebrates scoring for Wolves on January 18, 2020© Reuters

Wolves boast plenty of players who could lay a claim to this award this season and an extra-special mention must go to Adama Traore; only a handful of players in world football come into the 'unplayable' bracket when at their best, and Traore has showcased that level much more consistently in 2019-20.

As good as Traore has been, though, Raul Jimenez still pips him to this prize for me. The Mexican striker unsurprisingly tops the Wolves scoring charts and has registered more shots than any of his teammates, while he also ranks in the top three for assists, key passes per game and dribbles per game.

Only four players in the entire division have directly contributed to more league goals than his 19 this season, while only Liverpool trio Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino have scored more winning goals.

Indeed, Jimenez's goals have been worth 16 points this term - the difference between Wolves pushing for a Champions League spot and being level on points with the relegation zone.

Aside from his Premier League performances, Jimenez has also maintained those standards despite being one of the busiest players due to Europa League commitments this term, playing 44 games across all competitions already.



Matt Law, Football Editor: Raul Jimenez

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Raul Jimenez celebrates scoring their second goal on December 21, 2019© Reuters

A number of players have had very good Premier League seasons for Wolves, but Raul Jimenez has been the club's best player this term.

Indeed, a record of 13 goals in 29 league appearances is an indication of his contribution, while he has also come up with six assists in the top flight, which is the second-best record in the Wolves squad behind Adama Traore.

Jimenez has also had the most shots (99) for his side this season, 40 more than any other player, which is staggering considering the team's attacking talent.

It is not a surprise that a number of clubs are said to be looking at the Mexico international, who has developed into one of the most effective strikers in the Premier League in a relatively short space of time.



Darren Plant, Senior Reporter: Raul Jimenez

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Raul Jimenez celebrates scoring their first goal on November 28, 2019© Reuters

All things considered, this can only be between two players. However, while Adama Traore has received the most plaudits, Raul Jimenez has been irreplaceable.

The fact that Jimenez has contributed 13 goals and six assists does not tell the whole story. The Mexican's vast array of attributes have so often led to Wolves getting points on the board, sometimes against all of the odds.

The fact that Manchester United or Real Madrid may be his next destination tells you everything about Jimenez's impact this season, but Wolves will no doubt do everything that they can to keep him at Molineux.



Dan Lewis, Senior Reporter: Raul Jimenez

Raul Jimenez celebrates Wolves' win over Man City on October 6, 2019© Reuters

Adama Traore has come on massively this season by adding an end product to his game, while Joao Moutinho and Romain Saiss have also caught the eye, but you cannot look past Raul Jimenez for Wolves' player of the season.

The Mexican forward has justified his club-record fee by matching last season's 13-goal campaign in the Premier League - and with nine games still potentially to go, it seems almost certain that he will add more to his tally.

Jimenez has also played a big part in Wolves' impressive Europa League run with a combined six goals and assists.

Even when not in the best of form he has scored some vital goals - the sign of a top-class attacker.



Ben Knapton, Reporter: Adama Traore

Adama Traore celebrates scoring for Wolves on October 6, 2019© Reuters

Raul Jimenez has enjoyed another standout season and is worthy of a mention, but it is difficult to look past Adama Traore's contribution for me.

The Spaniard has blossomed into one of the league's trickiest players to defend against and is truly a joy to watch. So often criticised for his end product in the past, Traore has delivered on this aspect of his game with six goals and seven assists across all competitions this term.

It is no wonder that the 24-year-old has been linked with moves to European powerhouses such as Barcelona, Liverpool and Real Madrid. Traore's man-of-the-match performance against Manchester City alone is enough for any club to consider adding the winger to their ranks.

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Adama Traore in action for Wolves on December 27, 2019
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