Sport Soccer

Monday 24 July 2017

Doyle seeks new target to distract from league troubles

Marie Crowe

Marie Crowe

Kevin Doyle knows that Wolves are not going to win the Premier League so he'd welcome an FA Cup victory over Stoke today. A cup run would be something different, give Wolves confidence and take their minds off going into a relegation battle.

"If you do well in the cup it's a nice relief for the league and if we go further you'd start thinking 'we might do something here' and if we stay in the league it would be seen as a good season," he said. "If we get through this round, we're not that far away from the semi-final. We've seen Cardiff and Portsmouth get to the final in the last few years, why can't we?"

The sides drew twice in the league last season and Wolves have a win over Tony Pulis's side already this season but despite this good run the fixture doesn't appeal to Doyle.

"I have never enjoyed playing against Stoke," he said. "They're always very difficult, they're all strong lads. They get abuse for not playing very good football. If you look at it, at the end of the day they do play very good football but they are stereotyped into being that sort of team. We're getting a better reputation for playing good football, but it doesn't get us up the table."

One thing that won't be playing on Doyle's mind today is the transfer window. He doesn't expect the phone to ring between now and tomorrow's deadline but admits that if the right opportunity comes his way he will weigh it up and he has learned that from experience.

"At Reading there was a couple of opportunities that I came close to taking but I was new to England, just getting used to living there and I was enjoying where I was playing and happy at Reading. I wanted to reward them for signing me in the first place and didn't want to rock the boat. At the end of the day I'm happy I didn't because I like all those people and they gave me a chance."

Doyle played for Wolves against Liverpool in last week's match that will now be remembered for the controversy surrounding Andy Gray and Richard Keys. Doyle, however, was unaware that the referee's assistant was female until Liverpool's first goal when Wolves players thought, wrongly, that Raul Meireles was offside.

"When they scored the first goal I turned around and said 'f**k's sake, linesman' -- because I thought it was offside from my 50-yard-away view. Then I noticed it was a woman linesperson. If you see me playing I don't get angry, so I don't go wasting my energy on shouting at officials. I'd imagine you're not going to be up in her face like some of them. Having more female officials could bring a bit more respect into the game.

"She made a great decision when they scored the first goal, not that I was going to say anything to her -- I'm too lazy to argue with officials."

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