…had just been relegated after finishing bottom of the league with a goal difference of -39. The fans were gutted, players the same and we faced years of disappointment before we had the chance to play amongst the best in the country again.
But what ever happened to that relegated squad? Only Jody Craddock and Matt Murray remain at Molineux. I’ve done some digging to see where some of the memorable players are now.
Michael Oakes – Stayed with the club until 2007 when he was released and joined Cardiff. Currently works as a goalkeeper coach for Wrexham.
Paul Jones – Left Wolves in 2006 to join QPR after loan spells at Watford and Millwall. Earned 50 caps for Wales before ending his career at Bognor Regis in 2007. Currently works as a goalkeeper coach for the Wales national side.
Lee Naylor – Remained at the club until 2006 where he joined Celtic, which saw Charlie Mulgrew join Wolves. Has won the league and cup during his time there, played in the Champions League and scored his first Old Firm goal in the 2-1 win against Rangers earlier this month.
Paul Butler – Joined Leeds weeks after relegation after Wolves failed to give him a two-year contract. Went on to play for MK Dons and Chester before being released last summer. Currently working towards coaching badges.
Oleg Luzhny and Isaac Okoronkwo were released, Denis Irwin retired and now presents on MUTV and Joleon Lescott is now at Man City.
Paul Ince – Left Wolves after not being offered a new contract at the start of Mick McCarthy’s reign. Had a short spell at Swindon as a player-coach before leaving to manage Macclesfield. After saving the club from relegation, he moved to MK Dons where he won the Jonstones Paint Trophy and got the club promoted to League One. Became the first British black manager of a Premier League side when he took over as Blackburn manager, but was sacked after just 177 days. Returned to MK Dons where he has recently left, a year before his contract was up.
Colin Cameron – Remained at Wolves until 2006 but fell out of favour and he left the club after not being offered a new contract. Went on to play for Coventry, MK Dons, Dundee and was released from his contract earlier this month.
Alex Rae – Left Wolves on a free transfer after relegation and joined Rangers. Left in 2006 to become player-manager of Dundee. Retired from playing in 2008 but was later sacked by Dundee. Joined MK Dons as a first-team coach in 2009. Recently made a return to playing as cover for injured players.
Mark Kennedy – Remained at the club until his contract ran out in 2006. Joined Crystal Palace and is currently with Cardiff alongside former manager Dave Jones.
Shaun Newton – Remained at the club for several months before joining West Ham in March 2005. Received a seven month ban in 2006 after testing positive for cocaine. Joined Leicester in 2007 where he remained until January 2008 when he mutually terminated his contract. Had trials with Yeovil and Bournemouth.
Joey Gudjonsson has recently left Burnley, Keith Andrews is at Blackburn, Kevin Cooper plays for Neath in the Welsh leagues and Silas plays for Uniao Leiria in Portugal.
Henria Camara – Requested to leave Wolves straight after relegation and had spells on loan at Celtic and Southampton. Finally left the club for good in 2005 when he joined Wigan. Had loan spells at West Ham and Stoke before joining Sheffield United at the start of the 2009/10 season. Was released at the end of the season and recently signed for Greek side Atromitos.
Nathan Blake – Left Wolves after relegation and joined Leicester. Had a loan spell at Leeds but was suspended for six months after testing positive for a recreational drug. After a short spell with Newport County, he retired and is now running a property management company.
Kenny Miller – Stayed at the club until 2006 when he joined Celtic on a free transfer. Moved to Derby in 2007 but moved back to Scotland in 2008 to for his second spell with Rangers.
Steffen Iversen – Was released at the end of the season and joined Valerenga. Now plays for Rosenborg.
George Ndah has retired and runs a sports company, Dean Sturridge is working towards his coaching badges and Vio Ganea has retired.
So, many different paths for the former squad. It does make you think where our current crop of players will be in six years time. Jody Craddock will no doubt concentrate on his art work, Marcus Hahnemann will probably run a shooting ranch and Mick McCarthy will still be a moaning Yorkshire bloke!