Dear Diary Entry 77

More Match-Day Meetings

Nathan Blake

Thursday, February 1: Have been seeing plenty of Nathan Blake recently, especially on TV around Cardiff’s home FA Cup tie against Manchester City, and we also welcomed him to Molineux in his radio summarising role a month ago when Swansea were here on third-round day. The passing-away of John Hendley was uppermost in everyone’s mind that afternoon and Blake expressed sorrow when hearing the news for the first time and learning that he wouldn’t be having a catch-up with the mate he knew as Foz.

Saturday, February 3: Again had Mel Eves in the next seat to me in the press box as we enjoyed the sight this teatime of Wolves putting Sheffield United to flight with two of the best goals Molineux has witnessed in years. A convincing, commanding performance that augurs very well with the season now at the two-thirds stage.

Tuesday, February 6: First-team appearances are coming round much more slowly at present for Danny Batth, who I had a quick chat with at Molineux recently while we were both awaiting the call to go into meetings. He remains the only member of this season’s squad in our Legends area thanks to his 207 senior outings but he is having to be patient to add to his tally. Matt Doherty is in line to follow him into Wolves’ 200 club this spring.

Friday, February 9: Was disappointed to learn I had missed out on the chance to link up with Neil Emblen when he made what he called a ‘whirlwind visit’ back to the West Midlands. ‘Gribbers’ flew back to England as he needed a new British passport to support an application for a job visa for the USA.¬† After more than 12 years in New Zealand, he and Darren Bazeley have both left to take up assistant coach roles at Colorado Rapids. But such is the insecurity of the profession that Neil has left his family behind in what he describes as paradise in case things don’t work out as planned.

Thursday, February 15: Bumped into the Express & Star’s Wolves correspondent Tim Spiers and then the club’s newly-arrived head of media Max Fitzgerald on a visit to the city centre this lunchtime; exciting times lie ahead for both of them hopefully if the momentum can be maintained….

Wednesday, February 21: Met up with Paul Butler at tonight’s home game against¬†Norwich and was interested to hear him say of the visitors’ last-gasp equaliser that Wolves couldn’t afford to dwell on the disappointment but had to forget it and get ready to go again straightaway. The former central defender had a busy night and was not only on radio summarising duty but also on the pitch at half-time, along with Alistair Robertson, to be interviewed.

Bill McGarry on day one at Molineux with chairman John Ireland (left) and secretary and general manager Jack Howley.

Monday, February 26: Read a humorous Bill McGarry anecdote in the Ipswich Town Uncovered book we wrote about recently and were reminded that revenge is a dish best served cold. The paperback, by journalists Neal Manning and Dave Allard, contained a tale of how the manager asked Colin Macer, the resident photographer at Heathrow Airport, to take a picture of he and his Wolves squad when they were flying out on a trip. The trouble was that Macer had a dislike of the gaffer, who he described as rude and unhelpful from knowing him during their time working close together around Ipswich. He therefore took his time in lining up the players and management for the shot but, instead of pressing the button, turned his back, held up two fingers and walked away.



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