Writer: Stuart Smith
Date:Tuesday September 25 2007
It`s a funny old game.
Wolves 2007/8 campaign got off to a flyer when they earned promotion to The Premiership following the signing of goal machine Freddy Eastwood from Southend in pre-season.
Their position was solidified by the departure of winger Michael McIndoe whose presence had imbalanced McCarthy`s side so much in previous matches.
However, they were swiftly relegated, following an opening day loss at home to Watford.
Things picked up midweek when a 2-1 victory in the Carling Cup saw Eastwood open his Wolves account, and Wolves poorest defender Jody Craddock score Goal of the Season, earning himself a one way ticket to Stoke City in the process.
Three goals from that man Freddy earned Wolves back to back victories against Sheffield Wednesday and Blackpool, and also the league title, with Eastwood hailed as the new Steve Bull, and manager McCarthy the new Stan Cullis.
Seyi George Olofinjana, now living up to his next-Patrick-Viera billing was voted player of the season, before having it taken away again following media speculation regarding his contract extension.
Wolves league success was short lived, and they were brought back to earth, and the Championship, with a bump following an embarrassing Carling Cup exit to Morecambe.
It was plain for all to see that whatthe team lacked was the kind of balance given to the side by winger Michael McIndoe.
A dour 0-0 draw at Stoke was followed by a distressing 3-1 loss to Sheffield United as Wolves plummeted into Division One, at which point everyone realised that the manager wasn`t the new Stan Cullis, just the old Mick McCarthy.
It was time for action, and so with a solitary penalty to his name, and it becoming apparent that he would never score in open play, Andy Keogh had his contract cancelled, clearly not good enough for a Wolves side now powered by Morgan`s Millions.
Which did nothing to deter McCarthy naming him in his starting line up. After Gary Breen.
Now perilously close to relegation from the League, a lack lustre loss to Hull City saw McCarthy finally sacked, much to the relief of the paying public that never rated him anyway.
New owner Steve Morgan held talks with Jose Mourinho to take over the helm prior to his Stamford Bridge exit with the special one believed to have turned down the offer as he was unused to working at clubs of Wanderers immense stature.
With little choice, McCarthy was re instated and given four games to qualify for Europe One of his first decisions was to recall former captain Jody Craddock, now widely acknowledged as the clubs finest defender, pitting him straight into the first eleven for Wolves next crunch match.
With the title at stake, Wolves triumphantly returned to the top flight thanks to a typically clinical Andy Keogh scorcher against Norwich, and Kevin Foley`s first strike for the club.
Mick McCarthy was offered a contract for life and the squad then began preparations for their top flight return. Apart from Foley, who was waiting for news of a move to Stoke.
You really couldn't make it up.
Date:Tuesday September 25 2007
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