Wolves boss Ståle Solbakken admits he has to consider changes for tomorrow’s trip to Crystal Palace in the wake of back-to-back home defeats against Peterborough and Ipswich.
Wolves leaked five goals without reply over the two festive fixtures, an unpleasant surprise for the boss after three wins from four, and he knows a major improvement is needed ahead of a New Year’s Day visit to Selhurst Park (3pm).
The boss admits he has plenty to consider when it comes to team selection, both in terms of looking for a solid base and getting things back on track ahead of a few injured personnel returning next month.
“For me now it is about putting a team out against Palace that can be rock solid,” says Solbakken.
“We had a very offensive team against Ipswich, playing with two defensive midfielders but then Doyler, Sigurdarson and Sako behind Sylvan.
“It was more or less the same against Birmingham but with Dave Davis in for Tongo to have a little bit more defensive security.
“But it didn’t work.
“We are in this together but I have the responsibility - I pick the team and the players and do what I think is right.
“I have obviously got it very wrong over the last two games.
“It also suggests we may have to make changes and that is my job as a manager to do that if we have to.
“That is how it is.
“There can be small adjustments to tactics but we are now in a situation where we need to pick up points quickly.
“The base is there and then you have to switch it one way or another to make sure you get it right and then build from there.
“Personnel is always a question and hopefully the injury list will be shorter by the end of January.
“Sometimes one thing a manager needs is good competition for places and that hasn’t been good enough in some areas of the pitch.
“That can change things, people who are not in their best form can maybe have a rest.
“And also the January transfer window is coming where we can maybe add one or two qualities to the side that we don’t have.”
Wolves produced their two poor home performances off the back of a Molineux win against Birmingham in which they were particularly impressive in a barnstorming second half.
The boss hopes there is no negative Molineux factor coming into play, but acknowledges there will be less pressure from tomorrow’s game away at a team occupying the top six.
“I sincerely hope not (that there are problems playing at home).
“Maybe the pressure gets to us but before these two home games everything was looking positive for us.
“We had some solid performances and looked like playing the sort of football we want to play but in the last two games everything has gone wrong for us.
“In football you need to have confidence on the ball and then when you lose it you get punished it becomes very difficult.
“We can’t feel sorry for ourselves though – we have been poor but we have to pick ourselves up.
“Crystal Palace are a very good side especially at home.
“We may need to regain confidence and maybe that will be easier away from home.
“We have to do everything we can to make sure we put in a good performance.”
The boss is also still confident the squad are both ready and able to adapt to the different style of play which has been implemented.
But he is also concentrating firmly on short term results and brushing aside questions about hopes of promotion given the last two performances.
“I can say straightaway in terms of the players that we are all in it together,” he said.
“Having said that, those who have been here for five, six or seven years will struggle with the change of style – especially when things are tough – more than players who come in later and are maybe more used to it.
“But I think we have shown this season both in long spells and in short spells that we can handle it.
“It is about getting the right mix and it hasn’t been right in the last two games that’s for sure.
“When you are in a situation like Saturday and you keep playing one touch football instead of taking it down I don’t think that has anything to do with style but it’s more to do with winning over yourself.
“You play better when you are more confident.
“I don’t want to talk about promotion after Saturday.
“The last two performances and promotion are two things that do not belong together.
“If we’d won the two games we’d be right up there but this is not the time to discuss promotion.
“It is a tough job now for us to turn it around.”