Ian Holloway: Battered... but not out for the count
A 4-0 humbling and a red card is a horrible day at the office. We'll have to be much better next game – it's only Chelsea at home!
Sunday 27 February 2011
Wolves was horrible, a bad day at the office is putting it mildly. Although I am bruised and battered and hurting like you would not believe, I'm not out for the count.
I love being a Premier League manager, I'm lucky to be one, but unfortunately at this great level you are going to take some beatings. I can't lie though – I am upset about the manner in which we played. It wasn't us at Molineux, it wasn't the team that I have loved watching all season. I'm not going to take anything away from Wolves because they were the better side and deserved their win. They are a much better team than their position suggests and are particularly strong at home – ask Manchester United and Chelsea. But I expect more from my lads and for it to go wrong so early was hard to take. It was a good move from Wolves but I can't understand how their winger Matt Jarvis can be left with a free shot inside the area. That shouldn't happen, and certainly not within the opening two minutes.
Then DJ Campbell, who has been brilliant lately, gets sent off and for the life of me I don't know why he did what he did. That wasn't the DJ I know and he was in the wrong. He was getting kicked by Richard Stearman but you can't react like that. I didn't properly speak with DJ about it after the game but I will in the next day or two. It will cost us for the next three matches while he serves his ban.
In the end Wolves used the extra man well and 4-0 looks a horrible scoreline. I haven't had many bad days since I took this job, but this wasn't acceptable and we can't let it happen again. One thing is for certain, we will have to play much, much better for our next game – Chelsea at home. If we don't, we're in trouble.
Kenny's from heaven
Wolves fans are fantastic. This stems from my Bristol Rovers days. I was the boss and Kenny Hibbitt was the player-coach. He had broken his leg and wasn't playing. I walked on the pitch with him before kick-off and I have never seen a welcome like that from any club to anybody. It was awesome and the few hairs I've got left on the back of my neck stood up.
Obviously Kenny was a Wolves hero, a brilliant goalscoring mid-fielder, but even so the reception was something else and I still love Wolves because of that.
Earning our Spurs
I don't think we will get a better result than our win over Spurs. When you take into account the run we'd been on and the quality of the opposition, it was a priceless three points.
I wouldn't say it was getting to the stage where I didn't know where our next win was coming from, but you do begin to doubt yourself. I hate to admit that but it is true, and it's because of the media. That's not me pointing the finger, it is just a fact.
There is so much spotlight and focus on the Premier League that when people question your defence – like they did really harshly on Match of the Day the other week – and you keep hearing stats like "one win in nine", you find yourself thinking: "Are we doing that badly, are we doomed?"
The run we'd been on was hard to handle because it was the first time I had experienced it. We should have had it at the start of the season but, because we did so well, we didn't get any criticism. Instead we have had it big-time over the last few weeks and I don't care how strong you are, it does get to you. But it is at moments like that you have to sit down and say "erm, actually we're doing bloody well and we can't afford to forget that".
I always thought there was light at the end of the tunnel because we never stopped attacking and creating chances. We just needed a bit of luck and we got that against Tottenham.
I don't think I've ever been so scared before a match. Some of their players are incredible but my boys put in a real stint, DJ's goal was one of the best we've scored and we managed to see it through.
I didn't get to speak to Harry Redknapp afterwards but I met him on the way to the media room and he whispered in my ear that he was going to pack in if I didn't get manager of the year. That was nice of him but if I don't win it, I hope he doesn't quit – I'll feel pretty guilty!
I'm more a Blue fan than Boyzone, but don't get me started on new shoes...
Why all the fuss about Kenny Dalglish and Andy Carroll going to a Boyzone concert together? There's nothing wrong with that; I can see myself and Charlie Adam dancing the night away if the mood took us.
What annoyed me about that story was people saying footballers liking Boyzone showed we had dodgy taste in music. That's rubbish.
Don't diss Boyzone – they're pretty good. Granted I was more of a Blue fan, but how can anyone have bad music taste? Any sort of music is brilliant. I'm being serious here.
Music is your own bag and you can like what you want. We have such a choice... unlike men's shoes. I might be wandering off the subject a bit here but this has always bothered me. Now I've got a column, I'm going to get it off my chest.
How come women have such a wide choice when it comes to buying shoes? It's not fair and I don't get it. When we get a new suit, do we get new shoes to go with it? No, we make do with our old scabby pair.
But a woman says: "Oh hang on, I've got to get shoes and a bag to match my new dress." It's not right.
In summer, what have we got? We have some horrible sandals. But how many types of shoes are there for women? We don't need the heels but surely we should have the same choice? Right, I'm off to take my tablets and have a lie down...
Gunners gonna win League?
Today's Carling Cup final should be fascinating. I am good pals with Birmingham boss Alex McLeish but a big admirer of Arsène Wenger too.
Arsenal are favourites but it isn't a gimme. I hope Arsenal win something this season because they deserve a trophy for the manner in which they play the game.
The Premier League is the big one and I am getting more excited about it. Manchester United have to be favourites but Arsenal are going to push them all the way.
Arsenal's pace and movement are something else but the secret for them is that they've now got greater resilience and the emergence of Jack Wilshere has been a massive bonus.
This is a special season for Sir Alex Ferguson because he could beat Liverpool's record of top-flight titles. But do not write Arsenal off.
Soapbox Ormerod cleans up
My striker Brett Ormerod has written himself into the history books – the lad hasn't done bad for a factory worker from Blackburn.
Brett was playing part-time and working until the age of 21 when he was signed by Blackpool in 1997. He left four years later and played in an FA Cup final for Southampton, but returned to Bloomfield Road a couple of years ago and boy am I glad he did. His goal against Spurs made him the first Blackpool player to score in all four divisions. He has made himself immortal in these parts and it couldn't happen to a nicer bloke.
To work with him every day has been fantastic. He is great off the pitch, too. If he has a bone to pick, he'll go on about it and never stop. If you're sat with him, it's like being with someone from The Jeremy Kyle Show. He has to get his opinion over – so much so that we call him Soapbox. Well done Brett, but it doesn't mean that I'll pick you every game!
Toast the bride and groom... and the five kids
We had a cracking day when my chairman Karl Oyston got married. The church, near Lancaster, was beautiful and there was a singer to help with the hymns who could belt out tunes better than Pavarotti.
Back at the football club for the reception we had a singer who did all the old Sinatra stuff. I loved that. Then I danced so much, I wore the soles of my shoes out.
Karl and his wife Vicky have gone to Chile so he hasn't told me what he thought of my present: footstools with "His Lordship" and "Her Ladyship" on.
Best present was from a bloke who bought them seven toasters. Karl asked why and this fella said: "There's you, Vicky and your five kids – so you can have two pieces of toast each in the morning at the same time."
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