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Wolves boss Bruno Lage says increasing speculation linking midfielder Ruben Neves with a summer move to Barcelona is “no surprise”.

The 25-year-old Neves has long been linked with the Catalan giants and it seems likely that Sunday’s Premier League clash with Norwich could represent his last appearance at Molineux.

For Lage, who will return to the touchline against the Canaries after shrugging off coronavirus, it is obvious why Barcelona are just one of a number of clubs reportedly targeting the midfielder.

Everton v Wolverhampton Wanderers – Premier League – Goodison Park
Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves continues to be linked with Barcelona (Martin Rickett/PA)

Lage said: “If I was at (another) top club I would look for these kinds of players – they are what all the clubs want so it is no surprise to me.

“With what Ruben did this season you can see how important he is for our team. He puts us on a different level so it is no surprise that other clubs are moving for this.”

Unconfirmed reports say Wolves have priced Neves, whose current contract is not due to expire until 2024, in excess of £50million but Lage intimated he has not given up hope of persuading the player to stay.

Ruben Neves file photo
Ruben Neves could feature at Molineux for the last time on Sunday (Bradley Collyer/PA)

“When I arrived here last year we were worried about Ruben (leaving), and he stayed at the club, so I really don’t know,” added Lage.

“Everything can change in one minute and anything can happen until the end of the market, so we have a long time in front of us to understand what will happen.

“If he stays, I believe he will be the same professional, and he will have the same mindset to do another great season with Wolves.”