Rayan Ait-Nouri put in arguably his best performance of the season as Wolves saw off Everton 2-1 at Molineux.
He was up against the experienced pair of Andros Townsend and Seamus Coleman down the left and was able to get the better of them for the majority of the contest.
The young full-back was a threat all night and provided the assist for Max Kilman’s opener. Even defensively, the area where he has struggled the most, he looked solid.
With Fernando Marcal out injured, Ait-Nouri has the opportunity to make this position his own.
Pre-match, I asked Bruno Lage about this and he said if he performs, he will keep his place. Well, based off of tonight, he won’t be losing it any time soon.
Speaking after the victory, the manager was full of praise for the 20-year-old but was quick to relay the fact that his performances need to stay consistent.
“He did very well,” he said.
“When you look for his game, we know him. He did well against Nottingham Forest, he did well against Tottenham, also against Leeds.
“Offensively, he created a lot of problems but he needs to be consistent. He’s been working hard since the first day to grow up and to improve his defensive game and we are working with him a lot.
“For me it’s not a surprise when he has this kind of performance because Rayan is there every day working hard.
“Even when Marcal is there playing, every time he comes with a big smile and tries to work hard and improve his defensive game.
“Look he’s a kid, he has a lot of space to grow up. He has his own time and he knows and this is important, if he improves his game and turns into a better defender, he will be a very important player to us.
“This is the most important thing we have now, the competition we have in that position is the competition I want in every position.”