Mick McCarthy appears to have rested his strongest side against Manchester United. No doubt, reasoning that his side had no chance of getting even a draw at Old Trafford. The reasoning continues that if he rested his strongest side they would all be fit, fresh and raring to go at home to Burnley on Saturday.
There are a number of reasons why such logic does not work and such practices should be severely punished by the premier league.
At the start of this evening Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) were lining up to play Manchester City. Spurs were 10 points behind Manchester United in the table. However, if Wolves had played their weakest side against Spurs on Saturday and Spurs had won and Wolves played their strongest side against Manchester United on Tuesday Night then Spurs could have started the evening only 4 points behind Manchester United. Instead of finishing the evening 7 points behind Man Utd. They would have finished the evening only 1 point behind Man Utd, after their 3 – 0 victory over Man City.
Football is a funny old game. Results and performances are unpredictable. A team at the bottom of the table CAN pull off the occasional surprise by beating a team at the top of the table.
What happens if the season has one game to go. ManUtd and Chelsea are level on points. Wolves have nothing to play for, they are already relegated, but Mick McCarthy is a Manchester United supporter, he hates Chelsea, and their last game of the season is against ManUtd. Mick decides to give his favoured team a better chance of winning the league by fielding a team of reserves. Or, what happens if Mick McCarthy is being pressured by a betting syndicate to throw the game?
By choosing to field a weakened side against Man Utd on Tuesday evening, some will argue that what Mick McCarthy did was throw the game.
Arguing that what he did was cynical, desperate, unprofessional, and dishonest; lacked integrity, lacked ambition, and defrauded the fans; perverted the competition and demeaned the Premier League may not be considered unreasonable.
In Scotland, Rangers and Celtic are the strongest teams by far, but every week teams challenge the Old Firm honestly and with even more vigour than against the other teams. Managers get their teams fired up and they play out of their skins. These teams are a credit to themselves and their managers. If they lose, the managers have got the satisfaction that they got their players to perform and the knowledge that they can demand such performances every week.
As a football supporter, I expect my team to go out and do their best to win every week. In fact I demand it. If my team had a manager that deliberately held back or a player the constantly shirked his responsibilities I would not be particularly happy.
As the chairman of a football club, I would not entertain a manager who would deliberately throw a game or thought that a game was a lost cause before taking the field.
Why do Wolves want to be in the premiere league? Why does Mick McCarthy want to manage a premier league team? Is it just for the money?
Players want to be tested against the best. Great players would be disappointed if they were taking on the best team in the World and that team was unable to play their best team because of injury. They would feel insulted if the opposing manager rested his best players simply because the opposing manger thought that their team was inferior.
Real football players want to play every week and they want to test themselves against the top teams and the top players. Real managers are the same.
Thinking as Mick McCarthy does is for LOSERS.
Managers like Mick McCarthy and teams with the attitude of Wolves have no place in the Premier League. In fact I doubt if they would be tolerated in a Sunday League pub team.
The Premiere League should punish Wolves by deducting 3 points and actively discourage this activity.
Wolves should apologise to their fans and every team in the Premier League.
For their lack of ambition and their lack of integrity relegation is what Wolves deserve, this season and every season until they are no longer involved in professional sport.