Birmingham,The Stirrer, Black Country

news that matters, campaigns that count

for Birmingham, the Black Country and beyond

Kingy’s Wolves Blog

REALITY CHECKS IN

23-02-2010

Brendan King is honest enough to accept that Chelsea didn’t have to try too hard to take three points from Molineux. But he’s hoping for better things in Wolves’ next game.

Those who’ve seen the highlights of the Wolves 0-2 defeat to Chelsea, along with many neutral commentators, may have assumed Wolves were unlucky not to get at least a point aw at Molineux on Saturday.

There was a fantastic point blank save by Petr Cech early in the second half, from a fierce volley by our excellent new French recruit Adlene Guedioura, and, on 63 minutes, parrying a one-on-one shot from Kevin Foley, who’s getting nose-bleeds nowadays since being converted (temporarily I hope) from right-back to forward running midfielder.

But those who saw the full 90 minutes, either on Sky First or live at Molineux, will realise that, for most of the match, Chelsea were well in control and playing keep-ball at half pace as though they were in a practice match.

I imagine that Carlo Ancelotti and his assistant Ray Wilkins had instructed their team not to go hell for leather, so as to save their energy for the important Champions League tie on Wednesday. As half-time approached they went up a gear and popped one in with consummate ease on the 40th minute with the scorer inevitably being Didier Drogba.

This first goal was the result of a flawless example of pass and move football, that started with Cech passing the ball out and of which no Wolves player got a sniff, until Hahnemann picked it out of the net. Needless to say our, up until then, solid defence was all over the place.

This was the first save Hahnemann was asked to make (which he didn’t of course) while Cech made two fairly easy saves from superb runs followed by tame shots from our lone forward, Kevin Doyle.

Chelsea’s secnd half goal also wasn’t touched by a Wolves player, following a routine punt downfield by Cech, missed by the slow Christoph Berra and the forlornly off his line Hahnemann, and which was popped into the open net by Drogba to seal a routine win.

News that Kevin Foley has been receiving extra training sessions in striking the ball on goal, since his attacking midfield role has been imposed upon him, fills me with alarm. That a Premier League team has to re-coach any of its first team, when facing the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United, as the season reaches its final dozen games, is a sign of desperation and an indication of the severe limitations within the squad in respect of this season's poorly prepared challenge.

The good news, however, is that Wolves are still clear of the bottom three as the clubs directly below us, Hull and Bolton, were both thrashed 3-0, by West Ham and Blackburn respectively, at the weekend.

And Wolves’ next match, this coming Saturday, is against the beleaguered Bolton, whose performances have declined rather than improved with the exit of Garry Megson and arrival of Owen Coyle. There seems to be no honeymoon period for new managers nowadays in the lower reaches of any league. Players realise, perhaps, that they can’t be got rid of whatever their performances, with little money around for most clubs and the restrictions on transfers nullifying the buy and sell market.

Wolves, however, can expect a fighting and disciplined performance from Bolton at the Reebock as they, like us, are fighting for survival. We managed to beat Megson’s Trotters 2-1 at Molineux at the start of December, with an ‘offside’ headed goal from Jody Craddock and a spectacular swerving 30 yard blinder from Serbian midfielder Nenad Milijas.

Ned’s a player who can’t get a start, currently, or even a cameo appearance off the bench. He’s been ousted by the more determined, returnee to fitness and form, Dave Jones. Let’s hope Jonah can replicate his colleague’s left footed spectacular this Saturday.

Doing a second double of the season (we’ve already beaten Spurs twice) against the other Wanderers would be a great six pointer and lift us well up the table at the expense of our relegation rivals. But a draw would be okay I suppose.

Another defeat, however, would spell disaster as we run out of games in which to reach the 38 or 40 points that’ll save our bi-polar season. C’mon Wolves on Saturday - Wanderers v Wanderers is a ‘must result’ for the Wolverhampton variety.

DISCUSS THIS ON THE STIRRER FORUM FOOTBALL THREAD

Google

The Stirrer Forum

The Stirrer home

valid xhtml

©2006 - 2009 The Stirrer