Even by the standards of the Premiership the decision to sack the experience of Mick McCarthy in favour of his assistant Terry Connor was a baffling one. During his five and half years at the helm McCarthy has ended Wolves status as perennial Premiership yo-yoers and recruited several players of genuine Premiership quality, however a 5-1 defeat against local rivals West Brom has prompted what seems from the outside a knee jerk reaction.
If you are to sack your manager the key rule is to have the replacement already planned. This was demonstrated at QPR when a change of ownership ultimately saw Neil Warnock swiftly replaced with Tony Fernandes favoured choice of Mark Hughes, making the process of change as easy as possible for all involved.
However this has not been the approach of Steve Morgan and Jez Moxey at Molineux, with it quickly becoming apparent that there was no knight in shining armour ready to ride in and come to the rescue of Wolverhampton Wanderers. Instead an embarrassing run of rejection has ensued with Alan Curbishley, Walter Smith, Gus Poyet and Brian McDermott all publicly spurring the opportunity of a shot at Premiership management.
The Birmingham Mail reports owner Steve Morgan as saying of Wolves recruitment process, “We have nothing to be embarrassed about and the fans have nothing to be embarrassed about.” However I feel even Mr Morgan must be aware how disastrously he has handled his first attempt at management recruitment. He has demonstrated his realisation that the constant rejection of his management role was descending into farce by essentially appointing the first man willing to take the job.
If the Wolves owner wanted a lesson in the danger of handing the top job to a rookie assistant he only need follow the masterclass Blackburn owner’s Venky’s are offering in how not to run a football club. The somewhat odd decision to sack Sam Allardyce and place Steve Kean in charge is leading to almost certain relegation, and it appears Morgan is willing to accept the same fate for his club.
This could all lead to Connor facing a similar fate to Kean ,if current form continues, as fans already annoyed by the absence of a big name appointment they can throw their support behind begin to vent their frustrations creating an atmosphere at home matches that is of use to nobody but the away side.
Supporters anger on this occasion though could be understood. If Morgan felt the time for change had arrived the decision to promote a man who was already heavily involved in first time affairs is a strange one. The sacking of McCarthy suggested that the powers that be at Wolves believe new ideas are badly needed in the midlands, but yet none have arrived. Instead of new thinking all that the sacking of McCarthy has brought to Molineux is an absence of management experience.
One rumoured reason for the continued rejection of the Wolves post by a variety of bigger names was that the board only wished to appoint a manager to the end of the season. If Connor is unable to prevent relegation his management career is likely to be a short one, and could proved an incredibly expensive mistake for Morgan who would find his team plunged back into the obscurity of the Championship that McCarthy had helped them escape.
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