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'We couldn't have foreseen tht back then' - Matt Doherty revelling in Wolves' climb from League One to Europe

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Wolverhampton Wanderers' Irish defender Matt Doherty celebrates after scoring during the UEFA Europa League round of 32 second leg football match against RCD Espanyol at the RCDE Stadium. (Photo by PAU BARRENA / AFP) (Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images)

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Irish defender Matt Doherty celebrates after scoring during the UEFA Europa League round of 32 second leg football match against RCD Espanyol at the RCDE Stadium. (Photo by PAU BARRENA / AFP) (Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images)

AFP via Getty Images

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Irish defender Matt Doherty celebrates after scoring during the UEFA Europa League round of 32 second leg football match against RCD Espanyol at the RCDE Stadium. (Photo by PAU BARRENA / AFP) (Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images)

Matt Doherty admits he never wants Wolves' meteoric rise to end.

The defender has helped the club from Sky Bet League One to the brink of joining the European elite in six years.

Doherty was part of the squad which got relegated to League One in 2013 and has now helped them to the last 16 of the Europa League, where they face Olympiacos.

Wolves are also in the hunt for fifth in the Premier League and are just two points off the spot which could offer a Champions League place after Manchester City's European ban.

Fans rejected players' shirts following a 2-0 defeat at Brighton in 2013 which condemned them to the third tier and Doherty is revelling in Wolves' climb.

"I've been through it all here really," said the 28-year-old, who scored in Thursday's 3-2 Europa League defeat at Espanyol as Wolves progressed 6-3 on aggregate.

"There were some tough times when you are playing at Molineux, it's half-empty and you're getting booed off the pitch. It was like that at one point.

"So we just have to enjoy this and hope it lasts a long time. We couldn't have foreseen that back then.

"Since the manager came in, we've had nothing but success and we've got that winning mentality. I feel privileged just to be part of it."

Boss Nuno Espirito Santo is yet to sign a new contract with his current deal expiring in 18 months.

Arsenal were interested in him before moving for Mikel Arteta and Doherty is eager for the former Porto manager to prolong his stay.

"He's just a world-class coach. Everybody knows exactly what we have to do. We're very fortunate to have him," he said.

"We could keep him if we achieve what we're trying to. If we're successful then I'm sure. We've got a good team. So I hope he stays a long time."

Wolves now go to Tottenham on Sunday a point behind their hosts in the race for fifth with boyhood Arsenal fan Doherty relishing the task.

"We know Tottenham is a tough game but we're not scared of anybody to be honest," said the Republic of Ireland international.

"The way we've played games against the big teams this season, we've kind of got the better of them so there'll be no issue with that.

"We're battling on two fronts so we've got two chances to do the best we can possibly do.

"We fancy ourselves over two legs against anybody so we will try and go as far as we can in that and finish as high as we can in the league.

"We're really confident at the moment so any team that comes up against us will find it tough."

PA Media