To quote one of those Facebook status updates that are way too irritating to be informative, ‘if you expect nothing from anybody, you’re never disappointed.’
Maybe Sylvia Plath – and the school friend I have no intention of ever rekindling a friendship with – has a point with this one though.
Personally, a top 6 finish for Wolves would be the height of my expectations this season, bearing in mind the context in which Stale Solbakken found himself in when taking over the reins.
I’m not expecting a great deal so by definition, will not be upset if we’re not vying for an automatic spot come the end of the season.
In fact, a top six finish should represent the pinnacle of our ambitions, considering the following:
1. Solbakken inherited one of the worst squads ever to play in the Premier League (4th worst in fact)
2. He then had to sell Jarvis, Fletcher and Kightly
3. He has only been given a fraction of the £25million accumulated in sales – never mind parachute payments and Steve Morgan’s ‘treasure chest.’ (£3m Sako, £2.5m Sigurdarson, £700k Margrietter, the rest loans?)
4. We hardly EVER spend in January transfer windows
5. African based players will have barely experienced a British winter, let alone played in one
6. Stale still doesn’t have the backroom team he wants and requires.
Any comparison with Mick’s 2006/07 over-achievers has been described as spurious by some, because this squad is laden with Premier League experience rather than the low profile fare of the Pontins League – where Darren Potter and co were signed from.
I’m not so sure.
Was there a better keeper in the country than Matt Murray six years ago? Was Jackie McNamara not a more reliable left back than Stephen Ward? And how much better is Berra now than Jody Craddock was back in 2006?
Karl Henry is flourishing now like he was back then, while Olofinjana actually showed consistency and maturity alongside him, scoring 10 goals in his best ever-season.
Will Tongo Doumbia be as steady over the course of 46 games?
And don’t forget the signings of Kightly, Keogh and McIndoe in January to boost that squad of yesteryear.
That we finished fifth after beating Leicester 4-1 in May 2007 pays the ultimate tribute to Mick McCarthy and his best Merlin impression.
Anything like fifth place again and I’d not be disappointed.
I’d be positively ecstatic!