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Long Term Ambition


11:35 30th April 2014

Jackett's belief in forward momentum

Kenny Jackett admits Wolves' next aim is promotion back to the Barclays Premier League - but says the 2014-15 Sky Bet Championship will be crammed with clubs nursing the same ambition.

The Molineux head coach is preparing his team in the build-up to the Saturday home game with Carlisle that will be followed by the presentation of the Sky Bet League One trophy.

But planning is already well under way for the return to the higher division - a level which Norwich and Southampton have passed straight through in recent seasons while achieving successive promotions.

With their eyes still fixed on setting a new record for the number of points won in the third grade, Wolves will inevitably be seen by some as contenders in 12 months' time as well, and Kenny said: “You need to set short-term goals and this (promotion) has been the first step in our overall plan.

“Our aim when we come back in the summer is to get back to the Premier League. My staff and players.......we are here to get promoted next season.

“But three-quarters of the division would all think they’ve got a chance and we’ll be one of them. We have to set realistic targets to try to get promoted again next year.

“We certainly won’t be saying too much externally to help motivate the opposition or set us up for a big fall. We won’t talk about how we’re going to do that.

“But internally, we’ll know why we’re coming back and what our aim is, which is to try to get to the Premier League.

“I’ve just spent three years in the Championship (before joining Wolves) and it’s something we respect but do not fear. We go forwards with confidence."

Although Wolves have won both the Championship title and now the League One crown since going up to the Premier League by winning memorably at the Millennium Stadium in 2003, Kenny believes the play-off system encourages further hope among many clubs.

"Three-quarters of the Championship sides have been in the Premier League - therefore, they expect or hope to get back there. With the play-off system, it’s a realistic proposition.

“How many people fancied Burnley at the start of the season? I don’t think many thought they would be right up there.”

The former Millwall and Swansea boss also sees a difference in arriving in the Championship as a promoted club rather than one just relegated.

“I certainly think Wolves are going into the Championship in a lot more positive frame of mind, and a lot hungrier, than when they went into it two years ago," he said.

“It won’t be a lack of investment, or a lack of desire to try to get there - we’ll just come from it a different way.

“I’d suggest Wolves won’t let the momentum slip by not investing and bringing players in. I don’t think they’ll be players on big salaries out of the Premier League. They’ll be people who are up for making their name and wanting the challenge.

“It has happened before. I’ve been through Mick McCarthy’s promotion-winning side of 2009 and there weren’t many there that had great names or fantastic Premier League histories.

“It was a group just hungry to make their name and work their way up. That will be our aim now as well.”

With so many players due back at the club this summer from loan spells in England and abroad, part of the club's efforts will be channelled towards clearing the decks for those no longer in Jackett’s plans.

Hand in hand with new signings, there will inevitably be a need to facilitate some departures, with some of those outgoings likely to be players who were previously with Wolves in the Premier League.

“We hope we can get this club as streamlined as possible and move on those that aren’t necessarily part of it," Kenny said.

“It’s a credit to the board and Steve Morgan they haven’t let that group hamper us. From being the absolute focal point of the whole club, it has become less as the season has gone on. It will be a sideshow (after the squad report back) or a small part of it.”

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