Total Pageviews

Friday, October 19, 2007

Preview - Wolves (away)

Seventh in the table and just 4 points behind us it's Mick McCarthy's Wolves and they're next up tomorrow.
Wolves have a very long history being members of the first Football League in 1888 and have spent 60 seasons in the First Division ( although only a single year in the Premier) while the Addicks have only had 26 seasons in the top flight. They can also point to three League Championships in 1954, '58 and '59 but sadly for Wolves fans all long before the Premiership was even dreamt of. And, despite Hayward's millions, success has eluded them almost completely since the '50's and in the last 23 years only one season, 2003/04, has been spent in the top flight.
But at the moment they're having a good run with 4 games without defeat, although currently a bit of a striker problem has arisen with a torn hamstring set to rule out Irishman Stephen Elliott while Stephen Ward – McCarthy’s other option in a striking role – is also struggling with a long-term knee injury. And now its reported that summer signing Freddy Eastwood has an Achilles problem.

Not A Lot to Shout About!
After a total of 32 years in the same League as Wolves, we have only a grand total of 5 victories to point to at Molineux. The better news is that we've won the last two in 2003/04 by 4-0 and in our Promotion season 1999/2000 by 3-2.

The Opponents
Keep it Tight!
With only 1 goal conceded in their last 4 games, its not hard to see how McCarthy sees his football. And on first half form there's only one team better in the Division, Stoke. In all 10 games so far, Wolves have only conceded once in the first 45 and have not gone in for their half-time orange in a losing position. On 6-match current form, they lie 10th with 8 points from a possible 18, while the Addicks are 3rd with 12.
Five home games so far, with 3 wins and 2 defeats, last time out was a win 1-0 over Coventry with a 90th minute goal, before that a 2-0 win over Norwich, a 0-1 defeat by Hull, a win over Blackpool 2-1 and a first day defeat by Watford with both Watford goals coming in the last 4 minutes.

Who Are Yorr?
Remember Jay Bothroyd?
With injuries to all three main strikers Stephen Elliott, Stephen Ward and Freddie Eastwood, its more than possible that ex-Addicks Jay Bothroyd may make his first fizzy pop starting appearance of the season. So far he's made only 6 subs appearances and scored just one goal which was much the same as he did with the Addicks with 6 goals from only 4 starts and no less than 21 sub appearances.
His mate on the bench has usually been fellow striker Freddy Eastwood but at least he's gone 2 better and scored three times to be the leading goalscorer. But he's only started 4 League games all season and is normally behind Elliott, Ward and Andy Reid's Irish mate Andy Keogh in the pecking order. In fact the last time Eastwood started was their last defeat, 5 games ago, 0-1 to Hull, shame then that he doesn't look like playing.
In defence we'll see two aging 30 year olds with 33 year old Gary Breen, apparently once on the Addicks books but without playing a game, and who has the record of having been relegated from the Premier with three different teams Coventry, West Ham, Sunderland, although not THE record as our very own ex Hermann Hreidarsson did it with 4 clubs, including the Addicks of course. And beside Breen will be 32 year old Jody Craddock - somebody who'll remember a very sunny May day in 1998 as well as anyone, especially as he had the privilege of seeing a Clive Mendonca hat-trick at very close quarters.
In midfield for Wolves there'll be 6' 4" Nigerian Seyi George Olofinjana, McCarthy's choice as the best midfielder in the Fizzies (!). But we can't leave this section without pointing out the star of the show, England U-21 international Michael Kightly. Apparently styled "the Ryan Giggs of non-league football" whilst spending two years with Grays Athletic he joined Wolves in November last year since then scoring 9 times in 26 games. Not bad for a winger! As he's only 21 that makes him 17 years younger than his direct opponent tomorrow....Good job you've had a bit of a rest, Chris.

The Addicks
Still no Sam
With Pards approaching a settled eleven, there's only a couple of problems that he'll have to consider for tomorrow.
The only unknown element, apart from the right wing, is the injury situation with Fortune, who had to be substituted after just half-an-hour against Barnsley so it could be Sam Sodje to continue at centre-half.
And with Ben Thatcher, last seen against Sheff Wed back in August, and his niggling knee problem also continuing, and the unfortunate Cory Gibbs with his three fractured metatarsals in his left foot, its down to Chrissie Powell to continue but maybe we'll see 18 year old Grant Basey, now back from his loan spell at Brentford.
The right wing, especially as it's an away game, will probably belong to Ambrose with the remainder being the same as the Barnsley game, although there may be a doubt about Andy Reid and his ankle problem. Its possible that Pards may not want to put him out for the full game so after a good showing on Monday in the Reserve game against Brighton, Therry Racon may start his first game especially as the main danger from Wolves looks to be that youngster on the right wing Michael Kightly.
Weaver; Mills, Bougherra, Fortune (or Sodje), Powell; Ambrose, Semedo, Zheng, Reid (or Racon); Iwelumo, Varney.
Subs : Randolph, Racon, Thomas, Todorov.

What Does Pards Say?
No Comment
There's no words of wisdom, just yet.

Draw 0-0

This game doesn't look like its going to have many goals and a single one may settle it. It may even be the first 0-0 of the season.

No comments: