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Wolves confirm Sasa Kalajdzic damaged cruciate ligament injury on his debut

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Southampton – Premier League – Molineux Stadium
(Image credit: Tim Goode)

Striker Sasa Kalajdzic suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury during his Wolves debut on Saturday, the club have revealed.

The Austrian had only arrived at Compton Park from Stuttgart on Wednesday, having signed a five-year, £15million deal with Wolves.

But Kalajdzic’s first game for his new side’s 1-0 victory over Southampton was short-lived after he experienced knee pain in the first half, forcing Bruno Lage to replace his new signing for the second period.

“Sasa felt a pain in his knee late in the first half against Southampton. Unfortunately, scans reveal an anterior cruciate injury and he will see a knee specialist (on Monday),” said a medical spokesperson for the club.

“We now need to support Sasa in his recovery and further updates will follow.”

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Lage, speaking before the extent of the injury was known, had revealed he was pleased with how 6ft 7in Kalajdzic handled the physicality of the Premier League.

He said: “One of my assistants said: ‘Now you understand the Premier League’ and he (Kalajdzic) said: ‘Let them come’.

“It was 45 minutes for him to adapt. I also follow the Bundesliga and that
league also has the intensity and the aerial duels.

“He knows the Premier League is special because of that – every game he will
be playing against top defenders.”

The Wolves boss also revealed he was forced to hand Kalajdzic a surprise debut in the absence of Raul Jimenez, who was initially named among the substitutes before being withdrawn from the squad.

Burnley v Wolverhampton Wanderers – Premier League – Turf Moor

Raul Jimenez needs more time to recover (PA)

“We played Raul three games in a row without him doing a pre-season,” said Lage. “It was so hard for him to start the game, even to go to the bench.

“When he’s tried to run, it was with little pains, chronic fatigue, so it was
an easy decision.”

The medical spokesperson also provided an update on Jimenez, adding: “It was felt that his body needed a few more days to recover after he felt a pain in his groin during the warm-up and we did not want to put him at increased risk of injury.”

Daniel Podence’s scuffed finish in first-half stoppage time clinched Wolves
their first win in 13 top-flight matches and lifted them out of the bottom

It meant a third league defeat of the season for Southampton, who failed to
convert several goalscoring chances.

Leicester City v Southampton – Premier League – King Power Stadium

Mohammed Salisu believed Southampton deserved more from their trip to Molineux (PA)

Che Adams had a headed effort ruled out after the ball went in off his arm and
later headed substitute Stuart Armstrong’s delivery against the crossbar.

Defender Mohammed Salisu told Saints’ official website: “We are a little bit disappointed we didn’t end up with the points.

“I think the team did a great job, but in the end we don’t have the points, so
it’s a little bit disappointing.

“We had good chances in the game and we have to take our chances, because when you don’t take your chances the opponent will punish you, which they have now.”

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