Nuno’s team selection for the Liverpool game raised a smile.
It showed we’re taking the cup a bit more seriously than many – including myself – had anticipated. Long may that continue.
Without wanting to disrespect Shrewsbury I was happy to avoid a trip to Stoke and this should represent a good chance to progress further in the competition.
Despite the fact they’re 18th in League One I anticipate a difficult afternoon. They raised their game to win at the Britannia so no reason at all they can’t eliminate us if the lads don’t perform.
Sam Ricketts was incredible for Wolves and I don’t use that term lightly. It was a masterstroke bringing him to the club and he led that resurgent side back to the Championship with aplomb.
That experience will have served him well as he looks to save Shrewsbury’s bacon and keep them in the third tier.
Results have been mixed since he arrived from Wrexham in December, but points have been accrued to keep them just outside the relegation places and cup excitement is a welcome bonus.
If they can get a run of games out of Dave Edwards he should be a tremendous asset at that level and certainly good enough to help them consolidate an existence in League One.
He’s ruled himself out of this game with injury so thankfully we avoid that potential fairytale – unless there’s a replay of course.
The home end
Some views from the match thread on a Shrewsbury forum:
All we can hope for is Town give it everything they’ve got and just hope Wolves have an off day. Fingers crossed.
Wolves fans appear to have picked up on the lack of pace in our defence and are calling for the manager to include Traore in the Wolves team. One of the quickest players I have ever seen. On the plus side they are likely to play Ruddy in goal who I seem to remember had a game to forget in our pre season win over them last season. They also have a lack of decent cover in the centre of defence with Boli suspended. Just a pity we don’t have anyone upfront who could possibly exploit that. James Collins type centre forward needed.
If Amadi-Holloway doesn’t recover in time I think we could see a similar formation to that used at Sunderland and in the first game against Stoke. That could mean Laurent furthest forward in a central position with, possibly, Okenabirhie and Gillead flanking him. Alternatively we could see a fairly negative 4-5-1 designed to frustrate and stifle Wolves. Let’s be realistic, if Wolves play anything like a full strength midfield we’re going to seriously struggle to compete with the likes of Neves, Moutinho and the very gifted youngster Gibbs-White.
I would like to see us being a bit more expansive in this one and taking the game to Shrewsbury.
We don’t have vast options at the back so it will be a familiar setup. Further forward Moutinho may get a rest and I think having some muscle in the middle is never a bad idea against a lower league side.
Hopefully it’s a more attack minded front three and Traore gets an opportunity in his preferred position wide on the right.
One of Cav, Costa or Gibbs-White on the opposite side for me.
No Prediction League points up for grabs this weekend in the cup so just for a fun if you want to make a forecast.
I think we’ll win as those who come into the team will be motivated to make an impression and whoever we field there should remain a significant gulf in quality.
I’ll reserve full judgement until I see Nuno’s team but expecting to progress without a replay so will go for a 3-1.
Up The Wolves!