It’s hardly a surprise that one of the most technically gifted sides the game has ever seen swatted Wolves away with ease under the Molineux lights.
I came away feeling very little disappointment at being totally outplayed by a team that operates at a level we’ll never get anywhere near reaching.
At least most of the lads put some sort of shift in, and us weary fans are nearly at the end of a season that promised so much but, in the end, exposed the lack of backing given to Bruno to overhaul the squad.
Nothing less than a complete squad reshape will do this summer but we all know Fosun aren’t going to sanction this.
The biggest positive to take from the City mauling is Chiquinho’s performance even if he was playing out of position at right wing-back. His willingness to take on players with his pace and trickery and get involved at every opportunity was a breath of fresh air.
It was also nice to see Neto finding his form and setting up Donk for the equaliser. Raul, too, provided a timely reminder that he still has the ability to lead the Wolves line. Yes, he’s looked out of sorts at times this season, but that’s not been helped by a lack of service. A not-quite-at-it Raul is still levels above Fabio, who is a fish out of water. Who sanctioned that dreadful transfer?
I don’t understand Bruno’s logic either to move Jonny to centre back and play Chiquinho as the RWB. If you’re going to start Chiquinho then why not take the positive approach of playing him in his best position in a 343 and drop Donk into defence, allowing Jonny to start as RWB?
As good as City are on the ball, they shouldn’t have been able to cut through our defence so easily, especially for the first three goals. And that was playing the supposedly more solid system of 352. But what do you expect when you have Boly on the left, who has seen better days, and Jonny and Chiquinho out of position on the other side.
The most disappointing aspect of the evening was the way we passed the ball at a snail’s pace. This, and a lack of pressing, was the hallmark of the later part of the Nuno era, and it’s still very much embedded in the Wolves DNA. But what do you expect when the squad is largely unchanged?
It’s a shame because when we pressed City and moved the ball forward quickly, we caused them problems.
It’s a bit like when Fosun sold us the dream of competing with the elite – you’re given a glimpse of what could be, but you’re only too aware that isn’t the reality.