Leading the line. Assessing Wolves forward options

Leading the line. Assessing Wolves forward options

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The striker conundrum has always been an issue at Wolves. Ben Husband assesses Lambert’s current options.

As the first of Fosun’s ten year plan will hopefully see Wolves valiantly stumble to Championship safety; unquestionably there will be a desire to improve.

Although no area of the pitch has shone through the mediocrity, the strikers have been a particular cause for concern and frustration.

A simple look at the statistics make very worrying reading, with only few goals scored by strikers, combined, since August, to say they have profligate would be an understatement to say the least.

As Lambert and Wolves look to target a genuine promotion charge next year.

Who of the current crop have earned another shot at firing the club up the table?

Jon Dadi Bodvarsson

The two strikers who have been given the most opportunity this year have been Jon Dadi Bodvarsson and Nouha Dicko, who have started 20 and 15 games respectively.

With a combined haul of five goals, it makes sense to assess this pair’s future first.

When Bodvarsson’s signing was first announced in August, it was hardly met with widespread fanfare.

With 15 appearances and two goals in German’s second tier, it did little to appease the fears that Wolves were continuing to fail to replace Benik Afobe, who had left 7 months prior.

However, as the Icelander flew a rasping drive into Rotherham’s top corner on the opening day of the season, a hero was born.

By the end of August, his all action performances and then subsequent goal at rivals Birmingham helped to establish a new fan favourite.

Like it or loathe it, fans adopted the ‘Icelandic Clap’ and many were left eating a rather large slice of Scandinavian Humble Pie.

Unfortunately, before the pie was digested, the goals dried up, dramatically.

225 days later and over 30 hours play came before he finally dusted off his scoring boots in the defeat to Bristol City.

On his day, he has undoubtedly improved the side.

He has a tenacity and perseverance akin to Doyle, unfortunately his scoring ability also appears akin to the Irishman.

He will no doubt be at Wolves come August, whether he can lead the line in a side fighting for promotion remains to be seen.

Nouha Dicko

When Nouha Dicko was stretchered off during the home win against Charlton in September 2015, few would have guessed it would be 13 months until the talismanic striker returned.

Alas, as Wolves chased the game against Norwich in October 2016, Dicko was thrown on.

Within moments, his chance came.

It was not to be. Understandable rustiness, however, one does think how different both his and Wolves season could have been had he found the back of the net.

Although he has now managed two goals since his return, he is certainly not the same player who made up one third of the most exciting Wolves attacking force of recent years.

There still appears to be a stark lack of confidence, which with a player such as Dicko is a serious issue.

Few Wolves fans would not give the former Wigan starlet an opportunity for a full pre-season and one more go at re-finding the form he had in the 14/15 season.

However, the season of good will may be shortening.

Andreas Weimann

The addition of Andreas Weimann on loan has certainly helped Wolves cause and when played centrally he is a real threat.

All his goals have been finished with a calmness rarely seen during a turbulent season.

Along with the two players above, expect the Austrian to at least be in the squad when Wolves begin their first full season under Paul Lambert.

The supporting cast have also hardly set the world alight.

Supporting Cast 

Joe Mason, arguably less of a traditional forward than the others, has had a season disrupted by injuries.

Whether he is of the quality Wolves need is still to be debated and it would be no surprise to him seeking pastures new this summer.

As well as Mason leaving the club; one player who almost definitely will, is Paul Gladon.

A player almost certain to come up in a ‘Who is that player?’ quiz.

He has hardly featured and when he has, he hasn’t looked a player capable of playing anywhere near the level required.

Wolves will, unquestionably strengthen their forward line next year, it would be a genuine surprise if at least two, including Weimann are not signed.

While the wholesale changes many fans may wish for may not take place. A few players may now be playing for their long-term Molineux future.

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