As negativity starts to rear its ugly head around Molineux, David Evans explains why it could all be down to one factor and how it is all too familiar territory.
Remember how good it is when it’s all sunshine and roses?
Earlier this week, the club decided to ‘live blog’ the first half of the first ‘fans parliament’ meeting of the season.
Giving fans around the world the chance to both grill Jez Moxey and a visiting Kenny Jackett on recent events.
Jackett and Jez were open and honest about recent events including tactics, transfers and club finances.
However, the fan reaction afterwards was not one of clarification, but of confusion and further frustration.
Moxey once again became the big bad wolf with fans feeling Jackett had been given added pressure to answer questions.
Jackett’s track record of providing clear, concise and detailed answers on player selection and tactics was being scrutinised.
This is after 7 games. s-e-v-e-n-g-a-m-e-s.
Mid-September and once again fans are calling for Moxey to stand aside.
So, how has a defeat to Bolton (and less so with our recent earned draw against Brighton) and an open forum in the matter of a week lead to such aminosity and negativity within the Wolves family?
Reading all that I have read, the views from Jackett, Jaz and fans, in my opinion, it comes to this…
Wolves have missed a huge opportunity this summer.
The team Kenny has to work with for the rest of the season is no better than the last.
Wolves can improve, but the loan and January window can rarely through up the quality additions required.
(Afobe and Ebanks-Blake are the rareity in that anology).
On paper, this is a bold statement given that Wolves have lost one big player in Bakary Sako. But those who doubted the Malian are now realising the impact he brought.
If Stearman’s surprise sale hadn’t come so late into the window, would the side look as depleted? Or would any angst be as extravagant as it has been?
With the exception of Conor Coady and the injured Nouha Dicko, Wolves best line up is currently one that consists most of last season’s selection:
Ikeme, Golbourne, Batth, Hause, Iorfa, Price, MacDonald, Henry, VLP, Edwards, Afobe.
Bear in mind that this is a Wolves best team when on form.
Take McDonald for example. McDonald’s performances have been, so far, poor. Not enough to earn the new deal he seeks.
A Kevin McDonald on form however is unplayable. A prized gem in the heart of our midfield.
Wolves had an opportunity to take this team to the next stage this summer. Whilst complimenting and further educating its academy prospects.
This chance, with the numerous reasons you can care to think of, didn’t come to fruition this summer.
Jackett needed to add quality to his side to help the team evolve, but has just ‘added’ instead.
However, the continuing plan to build and add players from the academy is the right one. Something which will show signs of fruition over the next two or three years.
What both club and fan need to realise is that this is something that won’t pay off in the short term.
Some academy players can make an immediate impact. Like we have seen with Dominic Iorfa and Jack Price.
Others will need time, perhaps like Ethan Ebanks-Landell. In these instances loan spells may prove fruitful before first team appearances.
Surely not all cannot make the immediate leap.
These youngsters WILL become the Wolves of tomorrow.
Wolves won’t bring in 6 to 7 players anymore in one window. These recruits will be supplemented by the academy.
We all need patience. Something which I admit can be hard to remember when we lose on a Saturday.
The fans parliament talked about a group of four who deliberated and decided transfer activity. The fanstastic four being Jackett, Morgan, Moxey and Thelwell.
It is almost automatic when we criticise Morgan and Moxey for lacking investment. Continuing their pantomime villain roles.
It could be their decisions that have affected potential transfers. Unwise spending in the past could have made them just too cautious.
This can equally be a good or bad thing. Financially sensible or restrictive. The end of a season show these results.
Morgan and Moxey have also spent where needed. The clubs recruitment in the summer of 2010 was one of the highest in the Premier League. They splashed out for Benik Afobe in January and resisted the temptation to cash in on Bakary Sako to chance playoff glory.
From reading what has been said, it seems Jackett has the final say.
If Wolves have failed in their recruitment drive this summer, who is not to say that Kenny himself is one to shoulder some of the blame.
Jackett’s time at Wolves is starting to look a parallel of McCarthy’s, split into two periods.
Let me explain.
Season one. With little money, Wolves over-achieved expectations and entered the play offs with a near new team for a new era.
Season two. With expectations high, Wolves add to their ranks, but miss out on the playoffs on goal difference.
Season Three. Wolves invest in key signings such as Jones, Iwelumo, Stearman and Vokes. They remained top of the table from September onwards and earned promotion.
Compare this with McCarthy’s Premier League years.
Season one. Numerous recruits brought in. A final league position of 15th is more than expected.
Season two. Quality additions added. Wolves just about avoid relegation (obviously not the same as promotion but you see the comparison).
Season three. An evolution isn’t achieved. Little added and the squad basically remains the same. Relegation follows.
Compare these two chapters to Jackett’s time so far in his first two seasons. Doesn’t it all look familiar?
For me, It does, all bar one thing. Season three.
Wolves invested wisely once, and not again in the same position. One way succeeded, the other, failed.
Before you start suggesting that I’m supporting Morgan and Moxey, that’s not what I’m trying to say.
The impression we have been given is that of a group decision, with Jackett making the final call.
All for one and one for all.
We may never know the full answer of whether Wolves struggled to buy this summer or if they were mostly happy with the squad from day one of the window.
If Jackett and co have put faith in this current crop, it is another big call from Kenny. The Head Coach though does have a good track record with making the big decision.
Will a potential faith in this squad, and it’s youngsters, prove the right strategy this time around?
History is starting to repeat itself at Molineux. Wolves need to make sure they’re on the right side of it.
(Image via http://www.expressandstar.com/sport/wolverhampton-wanderers-fc/2015/09/16/jez-moxey-we-wont-be-sucked-into-market-explosion/ )