Cementing his status as one of the Premier League's best right-backs this season, Matt Doherty should be ready to push for a big transfer away from Wolves this summer, according to Stephen Hunt and Kenny Cunningham.
The Wolves wing-back is enjoying his second season in the Premier League much like he did the first with Wolves comfortably amongst the Europa League-chasing teams, but former internationals Hunt and Cunningham believe the time is now for the 28-year-old to move to one of England's traditional big clubs.
Speaking at Off The Ball's Cheltenham and Football Roadshow in The Camden, Hunt argued that the Irish international should be setting the goal to make a career-defining transfer this summer.
"What he has done this year is enable himself to go on another level and to get to that next level. So not just the one season wonder he had, he's now looking at setting goals of trying to get Wolves in the Champions League and then trying to get Ireland in the Euros and then you are looking at a summer move to a top-four club 'cause he's certainly playing that well.
"If he gets the move, obviously Wolves will determine where he goes, but he's certainly good enough now to play in Spurs, to play in an Arsenal team, to play in United's team – Wan-Bissaka has done ok."
"Sometimes you have to fight your way out. You've got to be mean, you've got to kick up a fuss, you've almost got to go on strike at times"
Kenny Cunningham and Stephen Hunt say Matt Doherty should push for a move to a bigger club this summer | @paddypower #OTBTheCamden pic.twitter.com/O0O6SIQoda
— Off The Ball (@offtheball) March 4, 2020
Asked why Doherty would leave if Wolves are a team capable of an annual push for Europe under Nuno Espírito Santo, Hunt warned about the risk of what if.
"If Nuno leaves Wolves in the summer, [there will be] ifs, buts and maybes then. Will it be the same?
"And he's 28 years of age, can he go and play for an Arsenal? He supports Arsenal. Can he play for Spurs? Can he play for the so-called big teams?
"Wolves are a big team now, make no mistake about it they have gone up a level so they will be on the edge of Europa league every year for the next couple of years.
"Right now it suits him perfectly but if he goes through his career just playing for Wolves he might just have an ifs, buts and maybes moment."
Drawing the comparison to Séamus Coleman, who never left Everton despite his quality to play at one of Europe's top clubs, Cunningham said Doherty needed to do whatever it takes if he wanted to take that next step.
"Sometimes you have to fight your way out. You've got to be mean, you've got to bang on the manager's door, you've got to kick up a fuss you've got to go on strike almost at times. You've got to fight your way out of the door to get that move sometimes."