What the Nathan Collins Deal Means for Wolves

Nathan Collins

Wolverhampton Wanderers confirmed the signing of Nathan Collins from Burnley earlier this week.

The 21-year-old Republic of Ireland international made the move to Molineux for a fee reported in the region of £20 million, despite only arriving at Turf Moor last summer.

How Does the Nathan Collins Transfer Affect Wolves

What the Club Said

Regarding the transfer, Wolves’ Technical Director Scott Sellars commented: “He’s a very talented young man – he’s only 21, has played international football and had a good season last year with Burnley. We think we’ve signed a player with a lot of potential, as well as being a very good footballer now.”

On Collins’ specific skillset, Sellars also added: “We’re getting someone who is physically very good, very tall, very athletic, and is very comfortable on the ball – he can step in and take the ball forward, which is what we need. He’s very good in both boxes and has real aerial strength.”

How Collins Fits at Wolves

Collins arrived at Turf Moor from Stoke City in June 2021 for a fee in the region of £12 million. Making 19 appearances food Burnley, he emerged as a first-team regular at Turf Moor, starting all of Burnley’s ten games of the season as they fought against relegation to the Championship. 

During those 19 appearances for Burnley, Collins ranks in the 98th percentile for blocks, as well as the 97th percentile for aerials won among fellow centre-backs in the top five leagues in Europe. So Wolves can expect a reliable presence at the base of their defence. 

Wolves preferred to line up with three centre-backs under new manager Bruno Lage last season. England international and club captain Conor Coady is all but nailed on for one of those spaces and the emergence of Max Kilman likely means the 25-year-old will claim another when fit.  Therefore, it’s likely that Collins will be competing for the third option at centre-back to begin the season. 

Romain Saiss, who made 31 appearances this past season, left the club this summer, opening up significant playing time at the heart of the defence. However, Willy Boly still remains a strong option at centre-back and 23-year-old Portuguese centre-back Toti made four appearances for the Midlands club at the end of last season after being recalled from his loan in the Swiss Super League. 

Therefore, Collins will face some competition if he is to become a first-team regular, however, with a strong skillset and bags of potential, it will likely be sooner rather than later for the Republic of Ireland international.