Things have never been so good for Wolves in the Premier League.
Well, after 20 games anyway. 31 points at this stage is the best tally we’ve ever achieved in the competition.
We’re sitting pretty in 8th and with the possible exception of Brighton, everyone below us is lacking consistency.
The question is: do we dare to look north?
Man Utd certainly aren’t great, Spurs and Arsenal aren’t the finished product and we have games in hand to reel West Ham in, so why not?
February will tell us a lot with games against three of those sides, but before that we’ve got a trip to Brentford’s shiny new ground.
The Bees have kept themselves away from immediate danger with three narrow home victories in the last three months. Everton in November, Watford in December and Villa in January.
It’s been mostly defeats in between though and having played more games than all the teams around them, there’s still plenty of work to do.
They’ll look at this fixture as an opportunity, particularly having seen Wolves off with a degree of comfort at Molineux in September.
Ivan Toney and Bryan Mbeumo got the goals on that occasion and although they’re still the guys Brentford will look to on Saturday, the respectable 25 goals they’ve managed so far have been spread around the team.
Conceding has been the problem and the 36 they’ve shipped gives them one of the weakest defences in the league. They did of course though keep a cleansheet against Wolves earlier in the season.
That was a gutsy decision by Bruno to select Toti Gomes for the Southampton game and it paid off handsomely with the big defender putting in a strong performance.
With Ruben Neves available for this one, Dendoncker could move into the back three but I’d like another look at Toti to see if he can establish himself as a viable option. His aggression in the air and recovery pace give us qualities we don’t always have at the back.
Both Adama and Fabio contributed off the bench but I suspect they’ll have to settle for another supporting role with that front three looking more established in recent weeks.
Trincao helps the team tick along in possession but has to deliver more individually. Daniel Podence is looking sharper by the week and hopefully he can avoid those niggling injuries that have hampered his progress at the club.
New boy Chiquinho should be on the bench if he is – as reported – a first-team signing. With Hwang and Neto still to return I can’t help but think he’s being viewed as a stop-gap solution in the likely event Traore leaves before the month is out.
Last time out
When Brentford deservedly won 2-0 at Molineux in September, they moved five points ahead of us in the table. The fact we’re now eight points clear of them having played two games fewer underlines our improvement since those early weeks.
The last time this specific fixture took place it was staged at Griffin Park and was a rare stalemate in our title-winning season under Nuno. We won 3-0 in the game at Molineux later in the campaign.
On a sunny note for both sides, it’s worth remembering we’ve played each other in League One, the Championship and now the Premier League over a relatively short span of time. Both clubs have made outstanding progress.
Well done to Graham from Horsham, theDOOGooder, The Witley Wanderer and Jazzwolf54 who all got the 3-1 scoreline against Southampton correct to collect a maximum last time out.
AveburyWolf still holds a margin lead over Cannock Wolf (courtesy of having got his score with one fewer prediction) at the top of the overall table at the end of Gameweek 20.
As always, if you’d like to join in, it’s simple – just leave your prediction in the comment section below using the boxes provided. Then repeat for every preview article throughout the season, making sure you always use the same email address to make your prediction. Your email is what ties you to your overall score.
You can read my prediction for the game in the comment section below.
Up The Wolves!
Polite request – when commenting in the preview article after the game has finished, can you not place score predictions in the boxes, please? It confuses the system. Many thanks.