Wolves decide not to appeal Karl Henry’s red card

6 04 2010

The sending off was the first of Karl Henry's career.

Wolves have today announced they will not appeal Karl Henry‘s red card and against Arsenal on Saturday.    

Captain Henry was dismissed by referee Andre Marriner midway through the second half for a tackle on Arsenal’s Tomas Rosicky.  

Henry labelled the decision an absolute disgrace, however if Wolves did appeal and the Premier League deemed it frivolous, Henry could receive an extra game added to his suspension.    

He will now miss Wolves’ games against his former club Stoke, the penultimate away game at Fulham and the home clash with Blackburn.  

Henry’s absence will not open the door for either Dave Edwards, Nenad Milijas or Adlene Guedioura to come back into the team.

Serbia captain Milijas will be more than keen to come back into the starting XI with the World Cup around the corner but he wouldn’t play the same role as Henry and Wolves’ shape would have to be altered. My tip is Guedioura.

My verdict: Despite both Henry and McCarthy’s view that it was not a sending off, the Premier League may still deem the tackle reckless and agree with referee Marriner.

My hatred for the elitist feel in the Barclays Premier League

4 04 2010

It was Wolves' first visit to the Emirates after Arsenal moved there in the summer of 2006.

Despite the huge disappointment at yesterday’s result, the overriding feeling about the whole away day at the Emirates was the elitist feel it oozed.   

The official coaches rolled up to the backstreets of Holloway at 12.30 leaving about 500 Wolves fans who travelled on them with at least an hour to fill before the turnstiles opened.

The choices were limited; you could either go and venture into the ghetto of Holloway which didn’t look desirable or head towards Arsenal’s old Highbury ground to find somewhere to watch the crunch game between Manchester United and Chelsea.

So over the white bridge we went and after a five minute walk we reached a pub but they announced it was only for over 21s. One man even had quite a heated altercation with the cocky stewards who wouldn’t let his daughter in.

After that, due to our lack of local knowledge we headed back to the area surrounding the stadium to find some grub. Now, don’t get me wrong I don’t mind spending big amounts of money on occasion but £6.90 for a frankfurter hotdog and a medium coke is insane.

At any other ground, you would go to another burger van to find something cheaper, but that was the problem. Unless you went to an official Arsenal refreshment bar you could have nothing else. Obviously they are trying to quell all other competition but it offered no choice. I mean who really goes to a football match to buy a salmon bagel???

Half the food advertised they didn’t even have ready to serve. From outside the stadium you could see inside the immaculately polished glass windows to where all Arsenal’s corporate customers were being served a buffet lunch. To the naked eye it almost seems as though Arsenal have disregarded their standard fans and just put all their effort into caring for the prawn sandwich brigade.

Anyway…we went inside and it was everything you could ask of a modern stadium, potentially the best i’ve been to (i.e. better than Wembley). Large concourse, several HD plasma screens showing both Soccer Saturday and Man Utd vs Chelsea and each and every seat was padded with plenty of leg room.

But it’s just not real in my view. Yeah fair play, Arsenal can now fill their ground with 60,000 people each week but it’s the same experience as I’ve had at Stamford Bridge and Old Trafford this season, the fans are turning up and just expecting their team to pick up three points. The place is soulless and lacks atmosphere to a worse extent than Highbury did when I visited a few years ago.

Don’t get me wrong I love going to the big cities like Liverpool and Manchester every other week for away games. It beats going to Scunthorpe and Blackpool but there’s something about those clubs that’s just more welcoming. Yesterday the Londoners just seemed so arrogant about everything that it really annoyed me. They felt they could just turn up each week and just sit there expecting something to happen from their team. They have got into a comfort zone which now with a new ground they cannot get back out of. In stark contrast, Wolves fans were relishing their first ever trip to the Emirates and stood singing all game. Furthermore, an appearance from striking legend Steve Bull in the away end prompted numerous old school chants much to the delight of the 3,000 travelling fans.

Undoubtedly Arsenal have got a hardcore following – evident by the fact they filled their allocation at Molineux in November but you could tell just walking away from the stadium that day trippers and tourists made up a fair percentage of the crowd. Loads of people (mainly foreigners from the accents I could hear) were having their picture taken in front of one of the Arsenal banners plastered on the stadium.

It may seem like me along with other Wolves are a bit hypocritical  after moaning that we should be in England’s top league for so long but I just prefer the down to earth feel of going to places like Barnsley, Sheffield and Nottingham where you are always received well by the locals. Everyone loves having a bit of banter with the opposition fans but on the three occassions I have visited the capital this season, home fans have talked to Wolves fans as though we are scum of the earth. Almost with the view of why should anyone come inside the London bubble! Idiots!

Anyway not a bad result for Wolves and my rant about the elitism of the Premier League is now officially over.

*I don’t think I can let the weekend pass without mentioning the on loan Stefan Maierhofer. The giant Austrian had to go in goal for ten minutes during Bristol City’s match with Nottingham Forest yesterday. Afterwards he was quoted as saying that he was ready to take over from Edwin Van der Sar at Old Trafford.

*Lastly one small note – I’m going to put it out there that Burnley are the worst team in Premier League history (yes that’s right – worse than Derby a couple of years ago).

Do you agree or disagree with what I’ve said – leave your comments below.

Wolves need to keep up their good form at Arsenal

28 03 2010

Wolves travel to Arsenal next weekend before facing rivals Stoke eight days later at Molineux.

Another good point and also a clean sheet at the sixth time of asking made sure that we are now up two places to 14th and more importantly five points clear of the drop zone.

You could even say we are effectively six points clear due to our relatively good goal difference of minus 22. It’s not bad in comparison to Hull’s minus 33, Burnley’s minus 34 and Wigan’s minus 30. It really could come down to that especially if everything is to play for on the final day of the season. The bookies are also starting to fancy us to stay up as our odds have lengthened to 9s, 10s and 11s to beat the drop.

It was a great atmosphere at Molineux yesterday as Wolves fans continuously cheered our team on after recent good performances away from. You would be mistaken to think that we had beaten Everton such was the cheer that greeted Mike Jones’ final whistle.

We rode our luck at times but the determination of people like George Elokobi and Jody Craddock to get in important positions at crucial times paid dividends.

I always thought it would be hard for either team to get a good passing game together as the midfield was so crowded. Both teams opted for five men in midfield and it just ended up being a bit scrappy at times..

Looking ahead…

Following the result yesterday I feel it’s so important to carry the good form into next weekend. Arsenal will be really up for the game as they know that either Manchester United or Chelsea will drop points in their lunchtime clash. You get the feeling we may have to park the bus and attempt to catch them on the counter attack as we did at Villa Park last weekend.

I think next week will be the same as when we went to Eastlands to face Manchester City at the start of the season.

Everyone was on a high after winning at Wigan and we just wanted to see Wolves put in a good performance. As it happened, Wolves only lost 1-0 and were unlucky not to have taken anything from the game. If Wolves can put in a similar showing next week that doesn’t damage our goal difference then I will come away happy.

I’m really looking forward to going down to the Emirates, it’s now only one of three Premier League grounds I haven’t been to and it looks like a great place to both play and watch football.  Here’s to another point (or three)!

Up the Wolves!!!