Match Preview: Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Birmingham City

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Wolves. The derby against the Dingles.

In recent years they have produced some moments of sheer exhilaration and I am talking just about games in the last decade.

Last season we saw Diego Fabbrini make his Birmingham City bow and tear Wolves apart as Kiernan and Gray secured three points. In 2014 Gary Rowett managed Blues for the first time at Molineux in a game that gave us hope of a better future after so long under the inconsistencies of Lee Clark, to be polite.

Wade Elliott scored while on the floor late in an F.A Cup replay in 2012, Kevin Phillips’ late double in 2010, Lee Bowyer’s stunner earlier that campaign during our lengthy unbeaten run.

And of course, who can forget the famous day at Molineux when Blues’ 3-2 victory over Wolves effectively saw us secure promotion in 2007, Andy Cole, Nicklas Bendtner and Cameron Jerome bagging before Colin Doyle denied Michael McIndoe a hat-trick in added time.

Wonderful days. With the play-offs still very much in sight from 9th position and Wolves looking to put together an unlikely late surge for the top six, a result on Sunday is potentially pivotal.

And there’s the bragging rights…

 

Team News:

James Vaughan and Nicolai Brock-Madsen are again the absentees as muscle injuries continue to keep them away from the picture.

Neal Eardley is still out for the long-term. Diego Fabbrini impressed as a substitute against Blackburn and will be pushing for a starting spot.

Kenny Jackett is contending with plenty of injuries currently saying much for their form since Christmas.

Mike Williamson and James Henry will not be available for the derby game. Dave Edwards and Ethan Ebanks-Landell are expected to be out for the season.

Lively pair Jordan Graham and Nouha Dicko are out for the long-term due to serious injuries. Jackett could name an unchanged squad.

 

Potential 18:

The big debate really is whether Rowett goes with Fabbrini or Toral. Anybody’s guess. I think Fabbrini may get the nod…

Tomasz Kuszczak;

Paul Caddis, Michael Morrison, Paul Robinson, Jonathan Grounds;

Maikel Kieftenbeld, Stephen Gleeson;

David Cotterill, Diego Fabbrini, Jacques Maghoma;

Clayton Donaldson.

 

Subs: Adam Legzdins; Ryan Shotton, Jonathan Spector, David Davis, Viv Solomon-Otabor, Will Buckley, Jon Toral.

 

Last time we met at Molineux?

Wolverhampton Wanderers 0-0 Birmingham City

A game of very few chances and one that the Sky viewers will have not been completely enamoured by. For the thousands of Blues fans that made the trip to Molineux, it was the start of something beautiful.

Blues came into the game on the back of an 8-0 loss to Bournemouth and changes were made quickly. Koby Arthur filled the void left by the injured Demarai Gray, Andrew Shinnie started his first game since the opening day, Stephen Gleeson was restored and Paul Caddis was back at right-back.

Wolves were generally the better side. An unfit group and lacking quality with the ball, it was very much a case of sticking to the shape Rowett had attempted during his short period in charge and denying a Wolves side very good going forward.

A 0-0 was a solid result for Gary Rowett’s new army.

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