I was going to start this piece off by saying this won’t be a Premier League fixture next season.
Given just how poor Swansea have been this season it’s looking like they’ll be coming down to the level that in reality they should’ve been playing at for the last few seasons.
They’ve dined out on the supposedly beautiful football that they were promoted with for too long now and for the last few seasons they’ve been doing a Sunderland.
Sunderland here being the prime example of a team who you know full well are going to be battling relegation every season and will eventually succumb to it.
The fact there’s a lack of pressure on us for this match means I actually feel more confident than I have for any of the last few league games, the tips may well reflect that.
As per usual the odds are taken from SkyBet.
Wolves to win to nil
We should be looking at this match as a decent barometer as to where we are as a squad for next season.
It won’t be the perfect indicator as there’ll most likely be some rotation from both sides but the signs will be there in terms of how the system works against a team who will be used to playing a higher paced game.
Rotation or not, this is one of the most anaemic attacks in the country.
They’ve scored just 13 times in 22 league matches and that’s down to the lack of creativity.
For the last few seasons Swansea have consistently been bailed out by Gylfi Sigurdsson’s talent for a dead ball situation, whether that be assists from corners/free kicks or scoring directly from free kicks anywhere within 30 yards of goal.
When Swansea have scored a goal in the last few seasons, Sigurdsson was very likely to be central to it.
Without him they’re creating next to no chances and they’ve been struggling on that front all season.
This is music to our ears of course, given we have the best defensive record in the Championship and even with 10 men for 50 minutes against Bristol City we looked tough to break down.
Who in that Swansea side is going to breach this defensive wall we create out of possession?
An ageing Wilfried Bony? A starved of service Tammy Abraham? The second coming of Steve Claridge in Oliver McBurnie? No chance.
On our end there’ll be some rotation.
I expect Diogo Jota to either start on the bench or miss out entirely, so it may well be a debut for new signing Rafa Mir with Cavaleiro on the left and Costa on the right.
Costa needs a good performance. Everyone knows just how talented he is and his 20-minute cameos when we’ve been seeing games out have been impressive, but when he’s started he hasn’t looked interested and the difference when Cavaleiro came on for him away at Bristol City was there for all to see.
He needs a confidence boost I think and given he has previous against Premier League sides in this competition I’d like to see him start on the right.
Whoever it is starting on the left is going to have a field day and this will be where we’ll have no problem creating chances from.
Kyle Naughton is suspended for Swansea and their back up Right-Back, Angel Rangel, has only played 64 minutes of Premier League football this season.
We may well be playing a Premier League club in name, but on the pitch they could look Championship standard. Wolves to win to nil is 6/4.
Under 2.5 goals
As previously mentioned I don’t see Swansea breaching our defence, regardless of rotation.
It’s at the other end where that rotation may begin to effect things.
The main reason our front 3 works so well is because they’re interchangeable and understand how each other play.
If Bonatini comes deep for the ball it drags a CB out of position and either Jota or Cavaleiro know they need to go beyond Bonatini at this point, it sounds simple in theory but the reason it works so well is because they’ve worked hard at it since the start of the season.
With a potentially rotated front 3 and maybe even a new face in Rafa Mir there could well be some growing pains as a new trio of players learn to play together.
There’s no doubting their individual talent but it’s whether they can come together as a cohesive forward line and cause the havoc that Bonatini, Jota and Cavaleiro do.
It’s not impossible that whichever 3 fill the forward spots do gel together quickly, but I don’t expect us to be scoring 3/4/5 against this Swansea side, the more likely outcome is we take the lead and rely on our shape to keep Swansea at bay for the rest of the game.
Under 2.5 goals is 4/6, or if you want to combine these two tips then Wolves to win 1-0 is 9/2.