Soccer

Wednesday 20 August 2014

I should have been given more time at Wolves, says fired boss Solbakken

Drew Williams

Published 07/01/2013 | 11:39

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FORMER Wolves boss Stale Solbakken believes he should have been given more time to turn the club's fortunes around.

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Saturday's embarrassing FA Cup third-round exit at non-league Luton proved the final straw for Wolves' hierarchy, who sacked Solbakken within hours of the 1-0 defeat.

The Norwegian, who only took charge in the summer, had gone into the game under real pressure following an awful festive period containing three successive defeats, which had left Wanderers 18th in the npower Championship and with just three wins from their last 16 league games.

But asked whether he should have been given more time, Solbakken simply said: "Yes.

"It's the name of the game. I am not a bitter person but obviously I think it was the wrong decision, but I sincerely hope Wolves can climb the table and they will be successful."

Solbakken's efforts were thwarted by a horrendous injury list, with more than 10 players in the treatment room of late.

He added: "I have enjoyed every minute of it. I understand it especially with the last three of four performances and results but we are in the middle of January and a lot of players are soon coming back so it's a good combination for changing things.

"But that was not to be and you have to respect that, it's not my club and not my money."

Wolves wasted little time appointing their fourth boss in less than a year after the dismissal of Mick McCarthy last February and the brief tenure of Terry Connor.

Saunders was immediately linked with the vacancy, and an announcement from League One club Doncaster yesterday morning stated they had received an approach and had given the 48-year-old permission to speak to the Black Country club.

It was subsequently revealed by Rovers last night that Saunders had accepted the new position and compensation had been agreed - 24 hours after Solbakken's departure - with Wolves officially confirming the appointment this morning.

The former Wales striker gained coaching experience at Blackburn and Newcastle while he was also assistant manager to John Toshack in the international set-up for three years.

He began his management career with Wrexham in 2008 before taking over at Doncaster in September 2011 and although he was unable to prevent relegation from the Championship, he departs the Keepmoat Stadium with Rovers currently joint-top of League One.

Saunders said: "It was a very difficult decision to leave Doncaster but this is a big club, it's a big challenge and I am looking forward to it.

"It is a tough league and we have to try and get up the other end of it. We have to hit the ground running.

"There is no secret in football - good players working hard and that is what I will be pointing at.

"It's a great club and I am proud to be the manager."

Saunders will be unveiled to the media at Molineux at 2pm this afternoon.

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