New strikers can help Wolves flourish

Thursday 6th February 2014 14:05

Nouha Dicko: Leading the push for promotion at Wolves

Nouha Dicko: Leading the push for promotion at Wolves

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Wolves FanZoner Karl Sears feels the club's January business could reap rewards with Kenny Jackett having totally changed his strikeforce.

Deadline day was action, action, action at Molineux. Players leaving, players arriving - it was rather a lot to keep up with.

We have a completely new forward line, one which is proven at this level and one which is already looking as if it will pay off. What we've lost never quite delivered what we expected, so are we more threatening going forward now?

The loss of Leigh Griffiths was a blow, not a surprise, but a blow nonetheless. I felt that he had an enormous potential and could be the force to fire us in to the Championship, and perhaps beyond.

I was always sceptical as to whether we could hold on to him past January, as my past articles will attest. But after his encouraging start to the season, and with the man himself saying that he had bought a house in Wolverhampton and was 'done', I dared think that I could be witnessing the fledgling career of a Molineux legend.

Not to be.

His performances declined noticeably as the season progressed, and that may well have been down to his head being turned, as Griffiths himself acknowledged: "It was the middle of December and my agent gave me a phone and said Celtic could be interested in January and I have just been counting down the days."

The middle of December? That means that Griffiths' mind has been covered in green and white hoops for over a month and a half: no wonder Jackett left him on the bench.

Reports also suggested that he had family in Scotland and that he travelled to see them twice a week from Wolverhampton, a situation that no doubt contributed to move.

But let's look on the bright side. We've lost a player whose mind, and often body, were elsewhere and, despite his fine finishing ability, had a lack of pace that was often exposed at this level.

We've gained Nouha Dicko and Leon Clarke, a pair who have a combined to score over 25 goals already this season in League 1, and the price of the pair? A little over what we recouped for Griffiths.

With Kevin Doyle leaving for QPR on loan, and inevitably scoring seven minutes in to this debut, and Bjorn Sigurdarson heading to Molde, Jackett has had a spring clean of our attacking options - and the gamble seems to have paid off.

In fact, Jackett's transfer policy since day one has been an undoubted success. He has strengthened from the back to the front, bringing in Sam Ricketts, Scott Golbourne and Kevin McDonald before the season to sure up the defence, then adding attacking threat in Michael Jacobs, James Henry and the aforementioned front two as the season progressed.

The tight games we won and the clean sheets we kept at the start of the season are a testament to Jackett's transfer success (we have the best goals conceded per game record in England), and I've no doubt the goals will flow between now and May.

Wayne Hennessey leaving is a blow, but getting £3million for him eases the pain. Keeping Bacary Sako is a boon - he's seemed to have been more interested in recent weeks - so all in all I'm more than happy that the squad we have can win the league.

I'll also stick my neck out and applaud the men up top for backing Jackett in the transfer market and not letting our stars go until it was right for the club. For all of the badness of recent seasons, let's also give some credit where credit's due.

So, we've just come off our best weekend of the season: we beat Bradford while Brentford and Leyton Orient both drop points. The league's worst team, Stevenage, are up next and only a win will do. Top spot beckons.

By Karl Sears, FanZone's Wolves blogger. Don't forget to follow @FanZone on Twitter

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