It is clear that Mick McCarthy has made some brilliant signings during his time as manager of Wolves. Unearthing the likes of Michael Kightly and Matt Jarvis. Some how finding Adlene Guedioura from the obscurity of the French second division. Convincing Kevin Doyle to turn down European football. All this after he said that the ‘M.M’ on his jacket didn’t stand for ‘Merlin the Magician’.
However, there is the odd player that Magical Mick brought in that would struggle to fit into the poorest of magician’s shows.
George Friend – Left-back brought in as back-up for George Elokobi on the final day of the Summer 2008 transfer window. Made few appearances for Wolves after being stuck behind Elokobi, Stephen Ward and Matt Hill. Recently released.
Matt Hill – Signed the same day as Friend, the left-back failed to make an impact and has been restricted to just a handful of appearances. Spent most of this season out on loan in the Championship.
Freddy Eastwood –One of the most controversial characters seen down the Molineux in a long time. After being linked with Premier League clubs, he eventually signing for about £1.5 million and promised big things. However, 31 games at 3 goals later, he was sold to Coventry…for amazingly the same amount he signed for Wolves for.
Darren Ward – Turned up from Crystal Palace for £1 million and £10,000 (ish, according to Football Manager 2010) never really settled into the squad. Following loan spells at Watford, Charlton and Millwall, he eventually left to join Millwall permanently.
There probably are many more but, for me, there will always be one name that sticks out when it comes to Magical Mick making money disappear and replacing it with a “footballer”.
Stefan Maierhofer – Joined for £1.7 million (plus add-ons) from Rapid Vienna in the Summer of 2009. Promising goals galore, the 6 foot 8 inches striker became the tallest player in the Premier League….literally dwarfing the opposition (sorry). However, nearly a year after signing, “The Hoff” has made a grand total of eight appearances for Wolves, scoring one goal. His season was summed up by a loan spell at Championship side Bristol City, which saw him mainly warm the bench…except for a 25 minute spell in goal in one match (long story). Now Wolves have survived, they owe around £850,000 to Vienna as a bonus for the “impact” that The Hoff had on keeping Wolves in the Premier League. Deary, deary me.
So there we have it, just a few of the players that didn’t turn out as magical as Mick had hoped. There are probably a few others that could be included, but I didn’t want to risk being the object of hate of too many professional footballers.
To end on a high, there is no doubt that Mick has unearthed some brilliant players during his time in charge at Molineux. The likes of Jarvis, Kightly and Doyle have surely made up for the odd spell of over-spending!