Player Ratings: Fulham v Wolves

Jack Wolfskin could be read on an ad alongside Craven Cottage yesterday, and if Wolves were  not really skinned, we lost at least a point against Fulham FC on the night.

But the Old Gold and Black really gave the Londoners a match. And if it was not for a sloppy wall-building in the last minute of the game we would have nicked a point. I suggest we give Henry, Fletcher and Hahnemann one week of hard labour as bricklayers to learn how to build a solid wall. Henry because he is the captain and should see to that the wall is solid. Hahnemann because he should see that it is placed correctly and Fletcher because he turned his back on the job yesterday -acting like a whore instead of a wall, if you know what I’m saying.

We were really lucky getting the first goal after only ten minutes. It was admittedly a tad against play. But it was well taken by Doyler and Van – two of the best players in Wolves yesterday.

Fulham continued to be a threat and have a lot of the ball, though, and they had at least one good call for a penalty. And of course the loss of Zamora to injury was a big blow for them, but please don’t blame Henry. It was a clean tackle and he did hit the ball.

After about forty minutes Wolves had a couple of chances to double their lead. That’s how close we were to three points in my opinion. After tea time Van Damme went off and Fletcher came on. I question that decision. Van Damme had – as against Newcastle – been one of our best players so far – both at defending and going forward. And Fletcher only offers something going forward.

But maybe Van got a knock or something? Or maybe it was determined beforehand that he would play only one half? But it weakened the team defensively to take him out of play. When Fletcher came on Jarvis shifted to the left wing and Doyle took charge of the right wing – leaving Fletcher and Ebanks-Blake to take the battle upfront. In my opinion that weakened our offensive play as well.

After the hour Doyle was substituted by Jones and it looked like we had nobody playing the right wing. At least not until five minutes before stoppage time when Guédioura came on for Ebanks-Blake.

I wonder if these really were wise decisions by manager McCarthy. I believe he was outsmarted by Mr Hughes in this game and have to take some of the blame for the points lost – at least one of them, maybe all three.

But let’s go to the main reason for me writing today. The ratings of the players. But kindly realise that it’s my subjective judgment and that football is a team sport. But I’ve watched the game and a rerun to be as fair as possible in my ratings.

Hahnemann – 5 – Made a couple of errors early on in the game and he really should have been more active telling the players to make the wall solid before the second Fulham goal. Some supporters begin to call for Hennessey to replace him, but I believe that’s a bit premature.

Foley – 6 – Did a very good first half, but made a couple of errors in the second when under hard pressure.

Craddock – 6 – A big error in the first half that could have costed a goal in the back, but like Foley he was better in the first half than the second.

Berra – 7 – What? Seven for him who got the foul and red card that sealed our faith? Yes! He was excellent in the first half and mastered the air in defence. In the second he disappeared some, but many others did as well.

Ward – 5 – The best performance against the Magpies but one of the worst today. But in the first half he was rarely seen with the ball as the main play was on the other side and in the second half he did a couple of errors in trying to defend.

Jarvis – 8 – One of a few players who played very good in both halves of the game.He has kept his form and is always a threat going forward with pace. Had a couple of chances to score and made a couple of chances to others. Played on the right wing in the first half and on the left in the second. He is an engine when the team goes forward and his pace caused trouble for the Fulham defence. A little better precision still needed in his crosses and shots at goal. Matt Jarvis is Paddytheflea’s Man Of The Match!

Henry – 7 – Very good in the first half. Controlled much of the game from deep down the midfield. He play tough, yes, but not dirty. Disappeared a little during the second half. As I wrote above his tackle against Zamora was clean.

Mancienne – 5 – One of my supporter friends once said that he looked like a child chasing a balloon on the pitch. A little harsh, but I could see what he mean yesterday. He did several mistakes during the first half. He chased a lot but did not catch many. He made many passes but missed many of them. In my opinion it was the wrong decision by McCarthy to bring him on from start in this game. He may be more comfortable in a 4-5-1-formation.

Van Damme – 9 – Played only one half of the game, unfortunately. No errors and a very well taken goal. Hard as a rock and good in the air. A box-to-box midfielder of the hard type. We need him for ninety minutes, McCarthy! If he had played as well the whole 90 he would have been my Man of the match and Wolves would have won it, I’m sure.

Doyle – 7 – Excellent in the first half and not bad at all at right wing until he was substituted after the hour. Held the ball up as always and was deep down defending on many occasions. We need him for the 90 as well.

Ebanks-Blake – 5 – Not so involved in the game as in previous matches. Fought hard battles against Hangeland in the central defence of Fulham and lost most of the time.

Fletcher – 4 – Came in for Van Damme in the second half, but played upfront. Had a couple of half chances, that’s all. Slower than Ebanks-Blake and Doyler. Maybe he’s not fully match fit yet, but he should be able to face a free and hold his knees together anyway.

Jones – 7 – Came on with half an hour left for Doyle and played in his usual role in the inner midfield. Nailed ten out of ten passes to fellow players – much better than Mancienne. Should have started the game in my opinion.


(As always you can catch a clip of the highlights from a link in the right margin)


~ by paddytheflea on September 12, 2010.

7 Responses to “Player Ratings: Fulham v Wolves”

  1. everything you’ve just said I 2nd. I’ll leave you to do all the talking. Great analysis!

  2. Van Damme looks to be an excellent buy, when he is on the pitch Wolves look a very decent team, take him off and we look a little lost. The only problem with Van Damme playing on the left is that Jarvis looks out of position and not as effective when he is playing down the right.

  3. It was a day of strange decisions by Mick. Starting with the inclusion of Mancienne for Jones. Mancienne’s distribution is very poor and without Jones we loose attacking thrust. If the ommision of Jones was to do with the contract wranglings then I would much sooner see Gwod replace him than Mancienne. If we play 4-4-2 we only need one defensive shield and thats Henry’s job.

    As you’ve touched on above, the substitutions were baffling too.

  4. Jones is set aside because he rejected the contracts offered to him, I belive. This is quite typical in these kind of situations now a days. “I questioning MM why he chose Mancienne. He is not even our property NOW. Two defensive midfielders are two much. Guedioura should have played as he is good enough both defensively and offensively.

  5. Great analysis Paddy. I am not a Wolves fan but enjoyed reading this. Do you think SEB will be the first choice striker from now on? He had a terrible 2009/2010 season but maybe, just maybe, he has shaken off the nerves and is ready to get stuck in. I assume he will be on penalties as well? Could you message me back and offer your opinion.

    • Yes, I believe that he will take our penalties if he is on. For now I think he will be a choice for the starting eleven, but Steven Fletcher is coming from behind wanting a place as well and when playing with only one striker Doyle will be the natural choice because of his superb ability to hold up the ball.

      The best way – in fact the only way – for Ebanks-Blake to stay a starter for Wolves is of course to produce goals. If he does not for a couple of games he will not start. Simple as that.

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