Wolves and Stoke City play out a snore-draw at Molineux

11 04 2010

Wolves remain 14th after the draw

Wolves drew 0-0 with Stoke at Molineux to move six points clear of the Premier League relegation zone.

In a hugely forgettable game, neither keeper was seriously tested and the game was continually disrupted due to the time it took Stoke to set up for Rory Delap’s long throws.

Delap had 27 throw-ins during the game yet he only completed 24 passes. Maybe you’re better suited to basketball mate?

Wolves defended the aerial onslaught well and can go into the final four games knowing that either Burnley or Hull will have to win two more games than Wolves

As a result, Wolves struggled to put a good passing game together and it was not ever going to be a game that attackers Matt Jarvis and Kevin Doyle could compete in due to their physical opponents of Robert Huth, Abdoulaye Faye and Danny Higginbotham.

The Potters have the joint meanest defence in the Premier League having only conceded 16 goals on their travels.

Wolves went closest when Kevin Foley’s dipping shot dropped narrowly wide from 20-yards and Stoke’s Mammady Sidibe should have converted midway through the second half.

My verdict: Boringgggggggggg. Strange game really because although Stoke’s set pieces kept halting play, once Wolves did have the ball they looked happy to keep it and play square balls instead of taking it forward.

Man of the match: Jody Craddock – the experienced defender headed everything away that came in his direction and lead the defence well to defend Stoke’s long throws.

Flop of the match: George Elokobi – not George’s best day in a Wolves shirt. His passing and overall decision making was dreadful to say the least. Mick McCarthy took exception to some Wolves fans booing the Cameroonian but I have no quarms with criticising him on here. I’d be surprised if McCarthy knows what a blog is.

Referee: Chris Foy – despite one or two 50/50 decisions that went in Stoke’s favour I think the Merseyside official had a good game.

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Wolves lose to Arsenal after a 95th minute winner from Nicklas Bendtner

3 04 2010

Arsenal have scored at least once in the last 20 minutes in each of their last 11 Premier League games at the Emirates.

Wolves lost by a Nicklas Bendtner goal to nil after having captain Karl Henry wrongly sent off midway through the second half.

Bendtner struck in the fifth minute of injury time to break Wolves’ hearts and deny them a fifth consecutive game unbeaten.

Karl Henry was dismissed midway through the second half for a challenge from behind on Tomas Rosicky. As per usual, Arsene Wenger went mad on the touchline. Mick McCarthy applauded Henry off the field much to the disgust of the Arsenal fans.

In truth, Wolves were battered for most of the game and rarely troubled Almunia in the Arsenal goal. Never mind, Burnley lost 6-1 and Hull lost 2-0. We are still five points clear of the drop zone.

My verdict: Wolves were so unlucky to come away with nothing from the Emirates after defending for their lives for 94 minutes of the game. It was annoying to see Wolves concede from a cross after we had dominated in the air all day in our own box. I’m not going to cry myself to sleep though as Arsenal’s squad is probably worth £150million more than ours is. Next week’s game against Stoke will be hard for different reasons and we will do well to pick up points there.

Man of the match: Marcus Hahnemann – Wolves were getting dominated from start to finish today and the only thing stopping them from scoring was the American stopper. Time after time Hahnemann came to pluck crosses out of the air. He also did well to react to some shots that came through a lot of bodies. Top stuff from the man who I never thought would be any good.

Flop of the match: Theo Walcott  Arsenal relied on the England international to put some telling crosses into the Wolves area but the £14million winger’s final ball was rubbish. I hope Fabio Capello was there to see it because he was dreadful.

Referee: Andre Marriner – I haven’t seen the red card tackle yet but according to Mick McCarthy and most of the nations media, Marriner got the big decision wrong and Karl Henry should have been cautioned at most.





Wolves are this weekend’s big winners in the fight for Premier League survival

22 03 2010

Wolves are set to remain unchanged for their seventh successive game tomorrow

Another set of games over and Wolves have run out the big winners. Portsmouth beating Hull was a huge result for Wanderers and I cannot express my gratitude towards Nwankwo Kanu enough.

Saturday’s draw at Villa could really be pivotal in our chances of staying up. I was so worried that Messrs Downing, Young and Milner would pick us apart but in the end both goals were unlucky. The first was clearly offside as John Carew checked back onside after the ball was played to slot it past Hahnemann and the second Carew ran in between defenders to guide it into the corner.

I’m still not convinced about the 4-5-1 we are playing (or 4-3-3 according to MM). We’re just not creating enough chances. The four goals we’ve scored in the last two games have come with a huge slice of luck and on another day they probably wouldn’t have gone in:

  • Tyrone Mears’ poor back pass
  • Clarke Carlisle’s own goal
  • Ronald Zubar miss hitting his own shot into Jody Craddock’s path
  • James Milner’s own goal

Although we played well we have been very lucky and aside from the two goals on Saturday we didn’t force Brad Friedel into a meaningful save.

But hey, we’ve been on the wrong end of some terrible luck ourselves along with some baffling refereeing decisions this season so anything lucky or fortunate that comes our way I’ll take.

Tomorrow’s game at West Ham is a difficult one to call. I’m thinking…Upton Park, intimidating place to go, fans right on top of you etc. On the other hand, you think well West Ham have to be on the fringes of the relegation zone for some reason.

Omens aren’t on our side as far as broadcasting is concerned. We have featured ten times on Sky Sports, ESPN or ITV this season and we have only won a single game (2-0 vs. Burnley) – lets hope we can add to that because at the moment my mates are laughing at me!

It’s crazy to think that West Ham came to Molineux on the opening day of the season and convincingly beat us 2-0. I thought they would be a decent team this season.

I think coming away with a point would be a great result and it would stretch the gap between us and the chasing pack. I think we can write off Burnley, their team is dreadful and doesn’t seem to have either the quality or strength to compete at this level.

Here’s the relegation table:

Team – Games Played – Goal Difference – Points

Wigan 31 (-30) 31

Wolves 30 (-24) 28

West Ham 30 (14) 27

————————–

Hull 31 (-33) 24

Burnley 30 (-35) 24 (They will be relegated)

Portsmouth 30  (-25) 13*  (They will be relegated)

*Pompey were eventually deducted nine points after going for broke and seeing it backfire spectacularly, (administration).

For me it’s going to be one team from three. I think Wigan (as much as I despise them) have got enough to stay up. I’ll reserve judgement one the Hammers until after tomorrow’s game. I’ve probably only seen them twice this season so I’m not sure what they’ve got in their locker.

What do you Wolves’ chances are now? Post your comments below.

Come on the boys!!





United scrape past Wolves

6 03 2010

Wolves 0 Manchester United 1 (Scholes 73)

Wolves remain 17th after the loss

Manchester United dealt Wolves another blow in their quest to avoid relegation after winning by a Paul Scholes goal to nil at Molineux.

With 17 minutes remaining, Scholes scored from six yards after Wolves failed to clear their lines to send the 2,500 away following into raptures.

Wolves had great chances of their own and substitue Sam Vokes in particular will be gutted after failing to convert a glorious chance in second half injury time.

The Welsh International somehow managed to blaze the ball over from 12 yards after being picked out from the right by Andy Keogh.

Earlier chances came to both Stephen Ward and David Jones but neither could beat Edwin Van der Sar in the United goal.

Mick McCarthy said: “The only way our luck will change is by carrying on playing that way and I do believe it will because we are playing well. We’ve put in good performances.”

Wolves (4-5-1) Hahnemann, Zubar, Craddock, Berra, Ward (Keogh 84), Henry, Foley, Guedioura (Ebanks-Blake 84), Jones, Jarvis (Vokes 88), Doyle.
Subs: Hennessey, Elokobi, Milijas, Mancienne.

Man Utd (4-1-4-1) Van der Sar, Brown (Neville 46), Vidic, Ferdinand, Evra, Scholes, Valencia, Carrick, Gibson (Diouf 62), Nani (Park 73), Berbatov.
Subs: Foster, Rafael Da Silva, Fletcher, Obertan.

Referee: Peter Walton (Northamptonshire)

Attendance: 28,883

My Verdict: Wolves could and should have taken something from a game that United didn’t look as though they wanted to win. Thoughts now turn to the biggest game of the season so far, Saturday’s trip up the M6 to Turf Moor, home of Burnley. A huge six pointer!