I think the less said about last night the better.
We’ve taken giant strides under Nuno, but it’s repeatedly obvious that attempting to break down a side content to defend and get men behind the ball exposes a weakness in the system.
There’s no incisiveness in central areas, meaning the ball is invariably shifted wide where teams can double up and cope more easily.
That’s exactly what Stoke did and deservedly emerged with the win.
If there’s a positive to playing Man City, you can feel fairly confident they won’t be sitting deep and surrendering the ball.
On the face of it, this is a much tougher game but it’s one Wolves should feel more comfortable playing.
Last season spluttered out for City culminating in that comical Champions League exit to Lyon.
They missed so many chances in that game, most notably Raheem Sterling’s open goal howler, and then conceded stupidly soft goals.
And that was their season in a nutshell. Squandered chances and sloppy defending.
Teams know if they can hang in defensively, there’s every chance City will pony something over at the other end.
Have they solved that problem with the signing of Nathan Ake? I’m not sure, but he should improve them and if they can keep Laporte fit they’re chances of success increase exponentially.
They’ll probably bring in at least one more defensive recruit I would have thought, but in the here and now they’ve pretty much got everyone available.
Bernando Silva came off for Portugal but could be back in time to start. Sergio Aguero is training again while Mahrez and Laporte return after positive Covid results.
It’s a shame the Messi transfer didn’t happen, as I would have loved to have seen him stepping out at Molineux.
The away end
Some comments on lifted from the pre-match thread on the Blue Moon Forum.
Wonder how Wolves will set up for this game and what tactics they may employ? Em, em, em, let me see, em, em, maybe the odd long-ball to Traore would be worth a try?
Nightmare fixture first up for us. Against a team that has our number and has become a jinx team. That and a seemingly unprepared squad with Pep still in quarantine and a poor transfer window thus far. Not expecting anything from this one.
Since Wolves have been back in the premiership, we’ve only beat them once. That was at the etihad and they were reduced to 10 men early in the game. A point at Molyneux would be a good result in my opinion..
Tough game. Win sets us up nicely. It does though have a feel to it that if we lose the old demons are there. Glad it’s one of the first games of the season
I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say that this is a must win game for city if we have any pretensions on getting the title back. wolves are a team we have struggled against in past, they are perfectly set up to counter our possession game and they are very hard working in defence which makes them very difficult to break down. if we can grab a win the confidence will roll into the next few matches and we could get off to a dream start. however a loss and all the old doubts will come back and there are plenty of teams that will have our number.
The big question, as is normally the case in fairness, is whether Nuno goes for 352 or 343?
We played the 352 at the Etihad and 343 at home, winning both games of course, so there’s no major clues to be found there.
Perhaps it makes sense to keep faith with the team that saw off Sheffield Utd? Ruben Neves will be the likely benefactor if Nuno feels we need the extra body in midfield.
It was concerning not to see Diogo Jota in the squad against Stoke. He’s not played well for a while but remains an important player. I wouldn’t like to see him leave.
Well done to Bedford Wolf, DancesWithWolves, Graham from Horsham, Happy Wanderer, JHP, Jackomac, Liz, London wolves loyal, Mosman Wolf, Northumbrian Wolf, Stafford Road Steve, The Witley Wanderer, Twixfix, VexRob, Wight Wolf, Zarco, kiwiwolf, pauluswolf and robc306 who all collected a maximum for correctly predicting a 2-0 win at Bramall Lane.
As always if you’d like to join in, simply leave your prediction for this game in the comment section below, which is where you’ll find my best guess.
Up The Wolves!