MIDFIELDER Mark Kennedy admitted Wolves lacked a cutting edge as they slipped to their first pre-season defeat at League Two side Wycombe.
But the genial Irishman insisted last Friday's contest had proved an invaluable workout as several of the squad came through their first 90 minutes of the summer. Wolves' overall superiority was not matched in the eventual scoreline as they failed to take their chances, Wycombe eventually claiming the spoils thanks to an unfortunate own goal from Joleon Lescott, who was otherwise his usual immaculate self.
"At the end of the day there's no point dominating games and possession if you can't kill teams off," said Kennedy.
"I thought we missed a couple of people up front and you've got to look at the fact that Leon Clarke's still a young lad and Vio Ganea's been out for a long time. But while we didn't kill them off from a workout point of view, which is what matters at this stage of the season, it was good.
"We're disappointed with the result because even though it's a friendly you always want to win but it was an important exercise from a training point of view.
"In the first half our passing was nice and crisp, the lads at the back were solid with Oakesey (Michael Oakes) not needing to make a save and we looked a decent side.
"After the break they came out a bit more lively, and got an unfortunate own goal."
Wolves had dominated the first half, controlling almost the entire period and peppering Frank Talia's goal with long range shots. Kennedy, Rohan Ricketts and Lee Naylor were all marginally off target and then just before the break both Seol and Leon Clarke were denied by the reflexes of the Wycombe keeper.
Having looked so comfortable in cruise control it was ironic that Wolves should fall behind within four minutes of the restart.
Former Blues striker Tommy Mooney sent in a decent half volley but it needed the intervention of first the post, and then the unfortunate Lescott, before finding the net.
The unfortunate own goal quickly sparked Wolves back into action with Ricketts seeing a powerful strike blocked by substitute keeper Steve Williams and Naylor again only inches off target.
But although substitute Lewis Gobern and Jackie McNamara also then tested Williams, Wolves needed to be on their guard at the other end as former Walsall midfielder Stefan Oakes flashed a long range drive just wide.
Seol then saw two further chances go begging thanks to excellent Williams' saves before Michael Oakes was called into some action of his own to beat away Danny Senda's blockbuster four minutes from time.
That was the last action of note, as Wolves succumbed to their first pre-season defeat. But on the plus side there was plenty to take heart from as many of the squad clocked up some valuable playing time ahead of the more serious commitments just over the horizon. n WYCOMBE: Talia (Williams 45); Senda, Johnson, Williamson, Myers (Easton 45); Oakes (Martin 76), Lee (Burnell 45), Stonebridge (Anya 83); Griffin (Tyson
45), Mooney (Dixon 68), Bloomfield (Betsy 35). WOLVES: Oakes; McNamara (Little 68), Craddock, Lescott, Naylor; Ricketts, Davies (Clingan 68), Kennedy; Seol (Cornes 83), Ganea (Gobern 54), Clarke. REFEREE: J. Singh
n KIDDERMINSTER 2 WOLVES 1 EIGHTEEN months on from that famous FA Cup tie when Kidderminster stood an agonising few seconds away from their greatest day, there was rather less at stake as these two sides renewed hostilities at Aggborough on Saturday.
While Harriers registered the winning scoreline, which could have changed their history had it come in January 2004, you won't find either manager reading too much into this particular result.
Kidderminster's Stuart Watkiss, a former Wolves player during the dark days of the early 1980s, was keeping his feet on the ground, despite a hugely promising afternoon in which his new signings fitted in seamlessly, Michael Blackwood joining a familiar, if all-too-often injured, face in Iyseden Christie in giving Wolves' youthful defence a torrid time.
By the same token Glenn Hoddle insisted he wouldn't be losing sleep over the most unconvincing of Wolves' quartet of friendlies to date, not least because commitments at Wycombe the previous night meant that a mere three of the starters are likely to be part of the Xi kicking off the Championship season on August 6. At this stage it's all about fitness, and discerning which of the club's younger players he can call upon in times of need, and so amid Hoddle's disappointment at Wolves' performance, he still viewed the 90 minutes as a useful exercise. Keeper Paul Jones, who began his career at Aggborough, might have a different opinion.
Granted, he will not be happy about either of Kidderminster's goals, first spilling a Laurie Wilson cross to allow Simon Russell to prod home and then finding himself off his line and stranded when Christie expertly chipped home just minutes later.
But he probably didn't need to be reminded by a sustained spell of abuse from the Wolves fans gathered behind his goal.
Jones appears to remain public enemy number one among the Molineux faithful, a situation which can hardly help improve his confidence and does little service to a usually supportive crowd who, in contrast, deserve every credit for the reception they gave George Ndah.
Jones made amends for his earlier indiscretions with two impressive second-half saves to deny Wilson and Russell, by which time Wolves were trying to secure an equaliser after Carl Cort headed home Sammy Clingan's cross just seconds after Christie had extended Harriers' advantage on 27 minutes.
The closest Wolves came to an equaliser was when Colin Cameron and Ndah were crowded out after two excellent drilled crosses from substitute Chris Cornes.
n HARRIERS (4-3-3): Danby; Evans, Jackson, Burgess, Hatswell (Burton, 69); Wilson, Fleming, O'Connor (Hurran, 61); Blackwood (Sheldon, 88), Christie (Moss, 74), Russell (Penn,
79). WOLVES (4-3-3): Jones; Little, Riley, Edwards, Rafferty; Cameron (Davies,
77), Olofinjana (Ndah, 45), Clingan; Cooper, Cort (Cornes, 65), Miller.