The Wandering Dead

Mr Willy Boly. In the post because I’m glad he’s back and I love Willy Boly

Now you would look at this title and think to yourself,”ar yam right…Walking jed” but no. I thought Wolves looked a little more shapy a little more movey abouty last night. Let’s talk about it.

Walking Dead was a few seasons of Zombie drama on the telly…I think it’s still on to be honest. I wasn’t a great watcher of it, it was a little too gory for my simple tastes. It was mental the first few seasons. Full of action and madness, new characters being introduced here there and everywhere. Sometimes the storylines didn’t pan out the way you wanted to. Some characters would be killed off. Normally chomped on by someone who looked like they had just stepped out of the Hawthorns most the time. You know, badly dressed, dirty, bad trims the lot. These characters replaced by other actors who slowly but surely made the parts their own. Then it got silly. Story arcs were convoluted tangles of errant story telling. Characters would disappear from view then pop up again. Formerly strong characters became a bit rubbish, a little too shallow for the drama.

Ringing any bells yet? I watched last nights match with a little hope that the story might be getting into it’s stride a little. Maybe the main characters realisation that they may see their relatives again seeing as the travel ban may be up would possibly galvanise the team into some sort of coherent form . That didn’t happen in any great or meaningful way. Instead I watched it with dead zombie eyes drooling occasionally and grunting at the Referee every few minutes. Moaning. Football is shit this season isn’t it? You can tell that by every teams performance this season. It’s a nothing season. This is where the actors flush with success tend to sit back a little and think the story line is weak so our acting also has to be weak. Perhaps the football has become nothing more than a rehearsal for when the opening night kicks off and we are resplendent in our love seeing these performers actually performing. You can’t blame Wolverhampton Wanderers. You can’t pin point any particular problem over why these strange surreal performances leave us scratching our balls (if you have them) and going onto social media for a good moan and Twittering becomes Twattering. It’s also really easy to get caught up in the general hysteria that results like this can cause. But I’m not hysterical. I’m just watching something very strange on the TV. It looks like football. Moutinho has space now because we are playing football against a proper football team. So no, they don’t have to wang a neck on the pitch to negate the movement of Moutinho. They have players that are quality enough to keep one eye on him and one eye on their own game. This allows Moutinho to look sparkly and fresh, a little like we used to know him. He had the space. Quality opposition and football brings out (sometimes) the best in our players.

But we are still wandering. Still on that insipid, septic, contagious drama where the story arc of season 4 is flat, insipid, lukewarm. It’s a bad pint of a season. Football in general I suspect is being killed off by VAR, confused officials, cost, the FA’s cack handed administration, lets play football death bingo eh? Chuck in all the things that are bad about the game we love. Pick any colour mate. For me I handle it all by watching old matches and reading about them. Reconnecting with what I love about the game and wonder if we have lost the plot all together. Season 4 is crap. People turning off in droves. It means nothing, this game, without us. I see it down the canal every day. It’s a Vox pop hub the canal is. Because you see most people who use the canal live by it. So they are working class folk. Remember it’s our game. So I stop folk and ask them about the game and spend a couple of minutes being sociable. But I hear everything down there. Some people aren’t that bothered. They are not there so it doesn’t affect them. They are waiting for the football to start again so they can get in the pub and throw a few pints down their necks. Some people are angry and they want answers and they want them quick. Others are stoic, stubborn, Black Country born and bred. Seen it all before, hang tight, hold on, the storm will pass. For some it will of course. Some people are not going back to Molineux. They have found new things to do. Lockdown Football has given them nothing so they have had to fill their Saturdays and weekends with other activities…some are much cheaper than football and they enjoy this new thing. Still Wolves fans of course. But something has gone from the game. Something has been taken away.

During the game Rui gets kneed in the head by Conor. This was where I nearly threw the laptop through the window. What the absolute fuck? Now reports say that he is going to be ok and that fills me with joy, I mean Rui for me has to be in the running for player of the season surely? I mean who else would you give it to? Neto maybe? He had a rough one last night but hey it was his birthday in the week and it’s obvious that a few sparkly beverages were necked and things went on until late O’clock. We can forgive him that one. Lets mention one of the former actors from this series who makes a cameo appearance in “The Wanderers” tonight and plays a blinder of a part. Busting a shot past Rui. He doesn’t really celebrate that much…which is good in my book. The performance was a smidgeon up on the last one for sure. Movement was happening, roles were being investigated thoroughly by our performers. Semedo must have had some words with Nuno because he looked dangerous. He was getting clattered a lot which tells me there was something going on in his head. He was moving well off the ball and having a pop. I mean normally when I watch Wolves I make a cup of tea at kick off because there wont be anything to see until 55 minutes. But Wolves look sharp, they are making space and hang on….what’s this? They also look a bit aggressive too! Shock horror. Wolves actually look like Wolves a bit. Perhaps they were inspired by seeing their families again, who knows. I like this though. My tea actually went a bit cold. Again the Officials seemed to be scared to wave a flag or act like officials. That Semedo chance…few other occasions. We had a good shout for a few penalties but ya know. It’s just Wolves. Nobody likes us. Chinese own the club. Who cares. I told you they wouldn’t like us once we started sitting at the big table. There is an anti Wolves narrative in the media. I suspect it’s to do with a lot of Anti Chinese sentiment at a Government level. I suspect the Old Boy network throbs at the mention of our name. I wonder if that Anti Wolves narrative also stretched to Officials. I do wonder sometimes.

Liverpool are just Liverpool really. Great players in there. Brilliant players really if they even manage to apply some of their mind to playing football rather than drowning in that Scouse insanity that hangs around their club. Other great players have sunk and drowned in it before now, choking up the bile that their fans unleash every time something goes a little wrong or weird. Mane, Salah are cutting shapes, Jota too. They look like Wolves used to look and even if we are maybe pulling ourselves up in the midst of this poor dialogue and shaky scenery I still wish we would rediscover…something. Pull out a magical moment. I thought Ruben would bury the free kick he had but alas. It was a stinger for sure but ultimately dysfunctional. There was no anger there. Movement for sure, and intent let down by the inability to bend down and cut the throat of the game.

So in conclusion. Blah a One-Nil loss at home to last seasons Champions I can deal with. The whole season of dysfunction and infection too. I think when this God awful ‘Season’ finishes we should all take a moment to reflect on it and then shove it away like a pair of beautiful but unwearable shoes. I suspect that the slightly eccentric substitutions were another symptom of Covidball. There’s no way I can even attempt to work those out not having all the information to hand but I will say this…I suspect there will be a lot of players moving out of this club in the summer. Names we know intimately and love. Nuno demands that his players stand up and be counted. It’s the Nuno way or no way. This season we have seen many of our players fail. Not so much in their football which has been workman like at the best of times but mentally they have not had the required drive that Nuno and his team would expect. I think. I keep thinking about the condensation dripping down the windows in the Royal London before a game. Ten to three and throw that beer down your throat, we’re going now, hurry up. You burp loudly and check you have everything. The air is cold outside the pub and you join the throng making their way down to the ground. Down the steps to the subway. Past the scratching bloke, past the programme seller who blocks the whole fucking subway. Someone starts singing in the subway. Others join in. It’s loud. Your head is slightly fizzy. You hear the stadium PA, the stadium. Molineux. Fucking hell.

NB: There are some people who live and breathe this club and often we don’t really understand how much this club means to them. They are suffering, we are all suffering a little. The team, Nuno, Fosun, and us. As easy as it is to let that anger out on social media I ask that you all just rein it in a little. I know that we aren’t ‘One Pack’ and probably haven’t been since the early eighties. Angst is real, hate is real too. There is probably some subliminal reason we hate each other, lockdown angst, ego, life problems and it all gets mixed up together and vomited out onto the internet where everybody can see it. If we were still stuck in the 4th division then I guess straighteners would be offered or people would be walking from the ground with noses like a caggy turnip. But you know it’s not like that any more. Have a head wobble. I’ve wobbled mine a bit over the last week for sure. My attempts to fund the blog so it’s lovely and shiny have been sabotaged by nefarious personages, fellow Wolves fans. But you see ‘Fellow Wolves fans’ are a very broad range of people. From the very worst egos amongst us to the very golden. Rich, poor you name it, that’s who walks up to Molineux. But the most important thing is who are you? Where do you fit into the idea of Wolves now? Me? Wolves continue to inspire me and to drive me to attain the same success they have over the past few years. I’m a positive sort of bloke, I can carry much misfortune on my broad back and have done for years. I’m used to that load. I will remain positive and you should too. Forget about mini dramas concerning social media. Forget about Superfans. Think about our team, think positive thoughts and lets grow some more Kwan, lets get sweaty in pubs again. Remember we always wander but we are never lost. Love you Rui get well soon!

Who Are You?


I’m typing this on my phone while I wait for the all clear to dive in and Jetwash some portaloos. Horrible outside isn’t it? Like a Plastic bag has just blown into your face. Grey and a bit suffocating. There is work banter here. It’s a company that makes generators. Because it’s the arse end of Cannock there is a Villa vibe here and that’s why I’m sat in the van. I’m not engaging in anything to do with football today, especially not with those freaks. I’ve just seen a Villa calendar in their office. Ugh.

I don’t want to talk about football because for a Wolves fan at least this topic of conversation is not a pleasurable experience. Not because of last nights battering against Manchester City….I mean I can’t even cuss Gaurdioloa or whatever his name is. I can’t wax sweet lyrics about how shit Manchester is, I can’t raise any points to describe what I watched last night…and I will be honest, I haven’t seen a Wolves team that dejected and bereft of ideas for a fair old time. Gutted isn’t the word. But why? We have just lost a match against one of the best teams in Europe, perhaps the World. Normally I suppose (although there’s nothing normal about supporting Wolves) we would just shrug our shoulders, smash something up and carry on with the week until we play again then it’s back to the start and we can watch what the team has in store for us after putting all the wrongs from the last match into rights for this one. Does this happen any more? No, not really. Instead we watch players with their hands on their hips huffing and puffing not getting back to defend, lend a hand, throw a shape or two. We see players that have lost any real idea of what they are supposed to be doing. There was no great idea here, no brilliant plan to upset a team who’s ascent to the top of the Premier League has been solid, workmanlike. That’s Manchester City. A team that can basically come out for a kick around against our team of expensive unknowns and hardly break breath. At one point last night two Man City players actually had a conversation in midfield while we passed it around, recycling a ball in endless circles before losing possession again.

Nuno and the staff have obviously got the nous to understand the whiteboard intricacy of modern day football, the stats, the biometrics, the analysis of play. I bet there was a file of crap on Manchester City, graphs, stats, little dots representing this player and that player. It’s all empirical and slick. But it doesn’t mean anything at all when the team have forgotten who the fuck they are. They have forgotten what it’s like to have any fight, any passion. This is a bit mental for me to deal with and for others. What’s the state of the fanbase? Flakies are battling the Generation Z boys on Social Media. There’s a Nuno out groove albeit a bit thick and messy at the moment. Good luck with that, There’s also the predictable targeting of players including young Owen whose photo you see up there at the top I hope. Traore is getting some neck as is Coady. Always has to be a target. Always has to be a single player singled out for some angst, always has to be some poor bastard cornered in the bogs so you can give him a quick shoeing, make your own life seem a bit better. I can’t single out anyone for a negative review. It’s all been a bit shit to be honest.

But the plan or the idea is always there, and it can be a good plan but if it’s enacted by players who have forgotten who they are yet alone how to play football then the plan just becomes another load of A4 printed shite to bung in the bin at Compton. Because football isn’t only about plans, ideas, strategies. It’s also about having an identity and the team, Fosun, Nuno, they have that. It was here ready made for them when they rolled into Town. Wolves, there aren’t many sides with a history as rich as ours, a legacy also. Wrap that up with a half insane passionate fanbase like ours and a brand that could be sold around the world and it’s all win-win isn’t it? No. Who are you Wolves? What has happened to you? I suspect a few things. One of them is that our owners don’t talk to us. We never hear anything from Fosun apart from short clipped statements from the media team. What are the plans for ‘our’ club? What are your thoughts? Could we have Jeff talking a bit? So we could debate what he said and add our own input? What are the plans going forwards? What are we doing? This is a time when we could could do with some passionate even dispassionate response from Wolves. Anything please, but no more shiny fucking videos please, just meat and veg chats. Something solid to get our teeth into.

I know it’s a transitional season and we should mentally write it off but even within a virus laden season such as this we would expect our team to go out and have a go at Manchester City. Close people down, have a nibble at them, take the piss a bit. We have great players and most of them can stand shoulder to shoulder with some of the City team. Know that they are no better than us in many respects because we’ve beaten them before. With style and fight. We lack that fight now. I’ve watched this apathy creeping into the side over the last few months. Reflected in that inability to gather themselves to get the ball back. These are Wolves with fat full bellies now rolling around in the sun, digesting, sleepy. They have forgotten what it’s like to fight and battle. Winning is a positive but I could deal with a loss like that if we fought. But it wasn’t that at all. It was a capitulation. Manchester City tickled our bellies and we rolled over like fat puppies.

If we were there it would have been much different but that’s not an excuse. These are highly paid players who have just forgotten the way of the Wolf. They have forgotten how to enjoy their football and they have forgotten that snotty kid inside of them that kicked a dusty football around in their yard and dreamed about playing top flight football. Not hungery, not inspired, not really engaged. They could have hit City hard if that modus operandii was flowing in their heads. Instead, I think they had probably lost this game before they even started it. That apathy grows fast and it is very contagious…what are the fixes?

I’m not sure. How do you motivate players on thick long contracts? How do you get them consolidated with a mission statement that energises them to actually play football like they used to? Have certain players got an inkling that they may be off? Nuno isn’t a Coach to suffer fools gladly. You don’t play by the Nuno way then you are gone. Not good enough? Goodbye. There isn’t any special love flowing around Compton. I don’t think there’s some sort of cosy atmosphere where they get comfortable and puppy fat. Who are you Wolves? We, the fans, those dickheads in the stands know how to battle. We do it every day. Paying bills, dealing with the Virus, dealing with the kids, putting food on the table, keeping things flowing and alive and it’s constant and to tell you the truth our victories are little things like the car passing the MOT or tooferwan offers in Tesco. Are you not inspired by your jobs that you do? Neither are we, but every day we get up and forge into the day with a smile and the hope that today will be the day. Battling, fighting, always and if we get tired we have mates that will rally around to support and help. But the whole Wolves idea is one that’s been a bit battered lately and has made us feel a bit weird again because we’ve been here before and we know that sometimes feelings like this tend to reflect a wider malaise and promise great football hardships to come and to be honest I think Wolves fans have been smacked around enough this season to deal with it. Who are Wolves? I think the club have forgot, I think the players have forgotten too. We haven’t got much of a choice as we are Wolves and always will be, we live and die here. This is all we have really.

My advice (as dysfunctional as it is) is this. Wolves….please remember that football is supposed to be fun. It’s a game. Take on board the tactics and the empirical crap all you want. It’s handy, it’s the modern way. It can give you an edge if you are on par with your opponent. If they are as good as you. It can be that sliver of daylight between you and can sometimes define a win and three points. But something more important is a deeper more metaphysical aspect of playing and that is that this is a battle, it’s combat that has been toned down so much that it rarely breaks into 22 man fist fights. But it’s still combat, it’s still war and you have to start swinging those fists around (metaphorically) you have to get a bit of madness, a bit of anger in there. Two dimensional thinking football will not win most games. Games are won by an episode of individual madness, a ball played unexpectedly to player A then to player B who isn’t supposed to be there according to the crib sheet but he is and wow, ball in the net. Goal. Brilliant. Go again. Forget about us for a while, forget about the History of the club, forget about Fosun even forget about Nuno. This is all about you as an individual player. Remember the kick arounds you had as a kid. Remember why you love football and let that love flow out on the pitch. Analyse the football with your brain but play with your fucking hearts. You have let us down in our derbies so far this year. I haven’t written about either of them because the Police would probably get involved and I don’t want steroid pumped Feds at my door poking their beards around. But sort Villa out for me this week please. Give us something at least.

Owen Otasowie. I am sorry you had to join this game and be involved in it. My advice to you is to forget it at once. This was not a normal night by any means and I don’t want your mind to be infected by the outbreak of bad football you were thrown into last night. We have watched and discussed you at length and are mightily pleased at what we have seen. You will have a good future here I think (and hope) so let me throw you some love.

Well Wolves. The staff have been told not to go to the toilets for half an hour so we can get in there and blow some of the shit and crud away. It’s raining a bit. I’ve got half a Kit Kat to eat later. Try and play some bloody football next week eh?

Love You