Gaffer keen for attacking threat at Leeds
Kenny Jackett says he will be looking for more attacking creativity from his team this evening as they take on Leeds United at Elland Road (7.45pm).
Wolves have only lost one in seven – and that in the last minute at Hull on Friday – but equally have only won two of those games in what has been a solid spell.
And, with four games remaining and Wolves heading for a mid-table finish, the Head Coach is keen to see more attacking play going forward.
He said: “A feature of us at the moment is that we’re in the games, we’re competitive, the games are tight, defensively there have been some good displays, but we want to be able to give other teams a problem and be able to create and score goals.
“We’ve got a good athletic side at the moment.
“But ultimately we want to do more going forward, otherwise you’re always susceptible to the type of winning goal we conceded at Hull.
“Leeds, similar to ourselves, are trying to finish as high as possible.
“They know they’ll be in this division next year.
“They’re a big club, as are Wolves, it’s always great to go to Elland Road, an old, traditional ground and it’s a game we’re looking forward to.
“At the start of the season they would have been saying, as ourselves, that they want to be up there competing.
‘They’ll have similar aspirations for the future as well - always to win, always to get points and for the side to develop.
“Against Hull we were athletic and competitive, and we’ll need to be that again.
“And on top of that we want to give more problems to the opposition, create more chances, score more goals.
“Working hard to keep one, building on that, and then improving on the other.
“Chris Wood has come back into their side, got a few goals and just been the difference - our centre backs will have to handle him.
“They have good ability out wide, good delivery from Charlie Taylor at left back, so we need to handle that and give them more problems than we have been to the opposition.”
Jackett will be selecting from the same squad which travelled to Hull, with the addition of skipper Danny Batth, who missed out through illness at the KC Stadium.
He has also confirmed that Wolves are now looking to next season for the return of Mike Williamson, who has been struggling with a troublesome hamstring tendon problem.
“We decided on Monday morning that there wasn’t enough time left between now and the end of the season for Mike,” said Jackett.
“It’s a niggling injury - it’s the other side of his body to the one he injured at Newcastle.
“It’s frustrating for him and us.
“It’s been two separate injuries with the hamstring and the tendon, but it’s a long period out and we’re very frustrated.
“If you’re looking at our centre back options we have needed some experience in there since Richard Stearman has gone.
“We felt Mike could provide us that.
“Having said that there have been positive performances in Danny Batth, Kortney Hause, Ethan Ebanks-Landell and, on Friday, Dominic Iorfa in the centre.
“We’re competitive in that area, but at different times the side has needed some experience.”
Jackett has also meanwhile confirmed that there are no issues with either Kevin McDonald or Nathan Byrne, who haven’t been selected in recent weeks.
The Head Coach says their challenge is to force their way back into the picture.
“Both are fit and available and have no problems with their attitude, or their training,” he said.
“It’s just more about the players who are playing, and my preference for those players.
“I haven’t seen any manager be able to do it with just 11, and you have to leave somebody out.
“A run with the other players is something I’m doing at the moment.
For Kevin and Nathan I’m open-minded, if they battle back and get into the side then credit to them. And that’s football life.
“That’s what you have to do – come through that and battle back.”