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Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui admitted that a lot has changed since the last time his side played against Everton.
They host the relegation-threatened Toffees at Molineux, with Sean Dyche’s team lingering above the drop zone in 17th.
Saturday’s clash is the reverse fixture of Lopetegui’s first game in charge of Wolves where they edged to victory on Boxing Day after substitute Rayan Ait-Nouri scored in stoppage time.
The goal handed Wolves a vital win to lift them off the foot of the table and Lopetegui believes a lot has changed since then.
“It seems a lot of years ago now, but it was only months,” he told a pre-match press conference.
“It was my first match in the Premier League and it was important. Being honest, we didn’t deserve to win this match, but in the end, we got what was important for us, which was to believe more.
“It was very difficult moment (at the start of his tenure) and we achieved three important points at that moment. It was a tough match and it’s going to be the same this Saturday, for sure.
“It was difficult to imagine we would be in the situation we are in now when we last played Everton, but it was our aim.
“We tried to achieve points and change things, knowing the difficulty and the quality of the level of the Premier League.
“Fortunately, we manged to achieve our aim and we are happy for this.
“But when you go and accept one new challenge, you are not thinking about the end of the challenge, you are only thinking of the next step, the next match and that’s the only way to build a new reality, and that’s what we tried to do.”
Wolves are currently 13th in the table with two games to go, starting with Everton before finishing the season at the Emirates against Arsenal.
They secured Premier League safety earlier in the month and Lopetegui knew the team would be safe when faced with their responses after defeats.
“Maybe after each defeat and with the answer of the players in the next day after a defeat. For me, they were very key moments and very important moments,” he added.
“To see them to come here into work [after a defeat] with big commitment and with a big belief, that was important. How we would manage and drive out of those bad moments were key for our achievement.”
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