It wasn’t supposed to be this way for Wolves. Needless to say, the positivity that surrounded the start of the season has now disappeared.
Wolves midfielder David Edwards has admitted to the Express and Star that he and his underperforming team-mates are playing for their futures as the ambitious Midlanders slip towards the relegation zone.
When Chinese conglomerate Fosun International completed their protracted takeover in the summer, and provided funds for a number of exciting new arrivals including club-record signing Ivan Cavaleiro, the beginning of a new era appeared to signal an end to the mediocrity that had enveloped the club in recent seasons.
However, after a promising start under Italian Walter Zenga (below), former Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert was parachuted in to prevent an alarming slide down the table.
A 2-0 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday, undermined by a series of defensive errors, means Wolves have now picked up just three points from a possible 27, a run that leaves them level on points with Cardiff City in the relegation zone.
And club captain Edwards, who has stayed with the club through thick and thin for the best part of a decade but is out of contract next summer, admits that everyone at Molineux has their futures on the line, especially with the deep pocketed new owners unlikely to allow sentiment to cloud their ambition.
“Every single player [is playing for his future],” the Welsh international midfielder told the Express and Star. “The manager has come in and said it is a clean slate for everyone and it’s up to us to perform and, if we don’t, we know the ambitions of the owners of the club.
“If we don’t produce, we are going to get replaced and we’ve got to accept that.
“I’m fighting for my shirt, I’m desperate to stay here. I’m desperate to earn a new contract and the rest of the boys are the same. How can you not want to play for this club?
“We need to realise – which we do in the dressing room – and the manager was the first to say it when he came in – we are in a relegation fight.”
Edwards was involved in a verbal altercation with a small number of supporters after the latest defeat on Saturday, but his obvious passion and emotional connection to the club can only be a positive in a side lacking in Championship experience.