What’s The Matter With … New stand to blame for Wolves demise?
Wolves are in big trouble, there is no doubt about it. Second from bottom in the Championship, no win in 12 games since before Christmas and the majority of the teams around them have games in hand.
It is 10/11 that they suffer back-to-back relegations from the Premier League to League One and some may argue that this is good for the club to flush out all of the problems and effectively start again, as the likes of Southampton and Norwich have successfully done in recent seasons.
Wolves have a mammoth squad by Championship standards and finishing in the bottom three would bring about the departure of many of these players, while chairman Steve Morgan has indicated that he would walk away if in the best interests in the club.
Although the departure of Mick McCarthy will be highlighted by many as the key point in Wolves’ downfall, Morgan’s decision to erect a new £18m stand at the start of last season may actually be the biggest reason for their issues.
Wolves fell into the Premier League relegation places during the January transfer window last year and aside from two weeks in January they remained there for the duration of the season.
McCarthy desperately needed money to spend to strengthen his squad, but the kitty was seemingly empty after Morgan had splashed out on the stadium instead.
Don’t get me wrong, clubs have to progress in more ways than simply improving the playing staff, but with Wolves almost certain to be involved in a relegation scrap at the start of the season, Morgan got his priorities wrong.
The gains from having the new Stan Cullis Stand were no way going to match what spending £18m in the transfer market could have achieved in the short term.
Now they have a new stand, but may well be staring down the barrel of having the most empty seats at their home ground in League One next season.
Morgan also has to take the brunt of the criticism for shoddy managerial appointments since McCarthy’s departure.
Steve Bruce was reportedly on the cusp of joining before that fell through and promoting Terry Connor, who is clearly a coach and not a manager, was a desperate move and was only going to bring about one outcome.
Things have got little better since, Stale Solbakken was a risk given this lack of English managerial experience and even now, although Dean Saunders has shown promise elsewhere, this is a big test of his credentials.
Wolves would have surely have been better off with somebody who knows their way around the division and McCarthy is showing the benefits of this type of appointment by helping Ipswich climb the league, while turning the screw on his old club in the process.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.