Archives for June 2015

Middle ground

It’s little surprise Kenny Jackett’s only summer signing to date is a midfielder.

Kenny summer

The success our manager has achieved in his two years has been underpinned by a welcome desire to get the ball down and pass.

But the sole addition of Jed Wallace raises as many questions as it answers given that Wolves are already overloaded with bodies across the middle.

If the Pompey man has been drafted in to play centrally alongside the immovable Kevin McDonald, he faces immediate competition from Dave Edwards, Jack Price and Lee Evans.

And what of the forgotten men – George Saville and Tommy Rowe? Are they to be completely discarded or will they start again with a clean slate?

That’s arguably seven players going to war for two positions; three possibly if Kenny opts to deploy one up front.

Equally, Wallace may have been earmarked to compensate for the loss of Bakary Sako.

But even in wide areas James Henry and Rajiv van La Parra may take some shifting. Then there’s the curiously overlooked Michael Jacobs. Will he get a kick this year?

Jordan Graham too will be looking to make inroads towards the first team after impressing for the U21s and can we completely discard Zeli Ismail, Eusébio Bancessi and the perpetually stricken Razak Boukari from the reckoning? One of those players might come good.

That’s another seven players (not including Wallace) who’d like to get in the picture, with talk still of another marquee signing to beef up the wide areas.

Competition is no bad thing of course, but it seems inconceivable that all these players will still be training at Compton Park come August. The fat needs to be trimmed.

The sheer volume of midfield combinations Kenny Jackett has at his disposal could also be a concern, if he feels the need to constantly rotate and experiment.

He did just that last November amidst a run of five successive defeats, which ultimately curtailed our promotion hopes in an otherwise excellent season.

The Championship demands consistency and that can only be achieved with a settled group of players and a manager who gets the balance right in the engine room.

With so many faces to choose from and the likelihood of more to come, there’s a long old summer ahead.

Over to you Kenny.