Bruno Lage, the Wolves head coach, faces frustration this month with the club unlikely to make any major signings in the transfer window.
Lage wants to sign three players to strengthen his squad but Telegraph Sport understands that Wolves owners Fosun are reluctant to bankroll any significant additions in January.
With funds limited, one solution could be for Wolves to consider offers of more than £20 million for Adama Traore, with Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham weighing up moves for the Spain international.
Wolves have been in talks with the winger over a new contract for more than a year but have still not reached an agreement, with sources suggesting that Traore’s release clause was a major stumbling block for the player’s representatives.
Tottenham had two offers rejected in the summer window and, despite the departure of former Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo, remain keen on signing him. West Ham manager David Moyes is also understood to be an admirer and offers of around £20 million would be enough to convince Wolves to do business.
Lage has frequently revealed his desperation to bring in a centre-half, winger and striker this month, but at this stage his hopes appear forlorn unless an offer comes in for Traore.
Loanees set to be recalled
Wolves are also preparing for the absence of Romain Saiss after Monday’s game at Manchester United, with the defender flying out to the Africa Cup of Nations with Morocco.
With Saiss away for at least three weeks, Lage is set to recall centre-back Dion Sanderson from his loan spell at Championship club Birmingham.
Ryan Giles, a winger, could return from a loan at Cardiff but any move to bring back Morgan Gibbs-White, who is impressing at Sheffield United, is thought to be unlikely.
Wolves will also be boosted by the return of last season’s player of the year, Pedro Neto, and Jonny Castro Otto from injury in the coming weeks, but Lage’s plea for new signings is not expected to succeed.
Lage said: “We trust in the players we have here but we need one, two or three [new] players.
“I will not change my opinion since the beginning of the season that we need to create more competition in our squad.”
Wolves signed five new players in the summer after Lage’s appointment: Hwang Hee-chan, Trincao, Rayan Ait-Nouri, Jose Sa and Yerson Mosquera.
Fears about long break between games
Before Monday night’s trip to United, Lage has concerns about Wolves going a fortnight without a match. Wolves have not played since December 19 after matches against Watford and Arsenal were postponed due to Covid-19 issues.
“For sure, that’s my concern, if they have the rhythm to play at the level after two weeks without games,” he said. “But the most amazing thing is that the players are ready to do different things every time.
“That’s why I’m so happy working with these guys because they are there every day. They come every day to training to grow up as a team.
“This is a special place because the people are here, they are working hard to improve the club.”