Let’s face facts, Wolves are flying. Since the beginning of September, they have played 14 games losing 2 drawing 1 and winning the remainder. They are impressive in front of goal too having scored 46 and conceded 11. Léo Bonatini has scored 11 goals with 5 assists, Diogo Jota has scored 9 goals with 4 assists and Ivan Cavaleiro has scored 6 goals with 5 assists. Now is not the time to play them, not that we have a choice of course! There is no doubt about it, that this is probably going to be our toughest match of the season.
Our stats are sorry reading. Our last 14 games have only seen us get points from 6 games with 3 wins and 3 draws. We have only scored 7 goals and have conceded 22. (6 of those were in one game of course!) On paper we haven’t a hope. If I were a Wolves fan, I’d be delighted that they were coming to St Andrews at this time.
Having said that, there WERE some positives from both the Forest and Sheffield Utd games. (Let’s conveniently ignore Boro!). I thought after an bit of an uncertain start, we defended really well at Sheffield and were a bit unfortunate not to come away with all 3 points. Cotterill tried a new formation which seemed to prevent Sheffield Utd from playing their normal game, and gave us gaps to utilise on the break. Whether this will work against an even more attacking Wolves side, remains to be seen.
There has been much talk about relegation, and while that is understandable, there IS STILL plenty of time to pull away. There is no doubt our injuries haven’t helped, Vassell was beginning to look the business when he got injured, and of course we have been without Adams recently too. However the biggest factor for me is that the side just didn’t appear to have a clear formation to play. Even if we do lose on Monday, and of course I hope we don’t, I think there is merit in us pursuing the set up we had against Sheffield. I would make a couple of changes though. I would bring Maghoma in for Jota and Adams for Juke. I don’t know what the issue was with them, but neither played that well – although I acknowledge it was Juke’s persistence that won the corner we scored from.
On paper we will get beat. In fact as proof on the English Championship betting from William Hill, the home of betting, the odds are absolutely not in our favour. Of course this IS a local derby, and form can be – and often is – over turned.
If we are going to get anything from this game, we will need to firstly defend out of our skins. Secondly not give anything away, something we have done too often. Finally we need to score at least once, because despite what I have said in one and two – the likelihood is we will concede!
Let’s hope we can turn the form book around, come on you Blues!