Bjorn Again

Striker loving his second chance

Bjorn Again may be the open goal of potential puns when it comes to considering the return of Mr Sigurdarson to Molineux.


But it certainly fits the bill.


A player brought in three-and-a-half years ago with much promise, and one whose claims were still being pushed by Stale Solbakken even after the former Wolves’ manager had departed his post.


He played the first half of the Sky Bet League One title-winning season, before Kenny Jackett embarked on a January reshuffle of his front bench to hugely successful effect.


After loan spells with Molde and FC Copenhagen, Sigurdarson then underwent back surgery which he is confident has resolved previous problems which were restricting his movement.


Jackett said if he proved himself in training he would get a chance – and so he did, firstly as a substitute at Brighton and then in starting the Emirates FA Cup tie at West Ham.


And then, after a bright performance, silence fell as the striker went down in agony with no opposition player near him, and was stretchered off, the eerie quiet turning into applause from all four sides of the stadium.


Was that to be the end for Siggy? A reoccurrence of the troublesome back problem which had so hampered his progress?


Thankfully not.  He was soon back in training and made his first Molineux start since November, 2013, in Tuesday’s 2-2 draw with Bolton.


He may also have made a sensational return had his third minute shot not bounced back off goalkeeper Ben Amos’s legs, but there was a happy ending to that story as new signing Joe Mason followed up to slot home the loose ball.


Will there be another happy chapter to the Sigurdarson story still around the corner?


There are many sections of the Molineux fanbase with whom he has something of a cult following that will certainly be hoping so.


“It has been quite weird,” Sigurdarson says of his return to action after a rollercoaster of a Wolves career thus far.


“I came here more than three year ago, went away for a while and played for two clubs, and then came back again and think I am doing quite well.


“So it has been a bit weird, but exciting too.


“It is so good to be back playing, to be back in England and playing games.


“I can’t deny that at times I thought my Wolves career was over.


“It crosses your mind that maybe you are not welcome back after the two loans.


“But I had a good chat with the gaffer and he told me that if I could prove that I was good enough then he would give me a chance.


“I started trainng and the gaffer was happy – it was great motivation.


“I think I have done that quite well so far in the last few weeks of training.


“It has been a good surprise to be back out there and playing games after the surgery on my back.”


Sigurdarson continues:  “I think I have learned a lot over the last two years.


“I am two years older now and I have learned from my experiences and it has helped me back in England which is where I really want to be playing.


“I think it was the right time for me when I came here, but it was a tough spell with three managers in the season.


“Even though it didn’t work out for me in the second season I was here it made me stronger and maybe made me realise how much I wanted it.


“I hate giving up.


“I don’t want to go somewhere, not do well,. and have to give up on it.


“I thought I wanted to come back and do the best I could to get back in the team.


“It wouldn’t have been too good to have left without this chance and it was about getting back in shape and coming back and giving it my best.”


What then of those anxious minutes as Sigurdarson return to the dressing rooms at West Ham having been left prostrate on the turf.


A real ‘Hammer’ blow, if ever there was one.


“At the time I thought I maybe needed more surgery – it was that painful that I thought it would take weeks to recover,” he recalls.


“But a few hours after that, and then over the next few days, I felt much better.


“It was such a relief and it was amazing to then come back into training.


“I think it (the injury) will not trouble me anymore.


“I have done the right things to get it right , the physios are helping me every day and I believe it will not come back - I am confident I will be fine.”


And then onto Tuesday night, and that early chance.


The stage was set, but agonisingly the visiting keeper had other ideas.


“I thought to myself that it was going to be a goal and an amazing start., “ says the Icelander.


“It hit the goalkkeeper’s leg and then Joe followed up to score and that was good enough for me.


“It felt good for the team.


“After that I just thought it was going to be fun, being back, playing games – this is what I want to be doing.


“I did get tired in the end and thought it might be better to have some fresh legs.


“Lenny (James Henry) came on and scored a great goal but it was disappointing that we didn’t manage to win.


“It would be great to get a goal against Reading but the most important thing is that we need the three points.


“If we can do that, and I can get a goal, it would be awesome.”


Wolves may have had some disappointing results amid some other hugely positive ones during a fluctuating season so far.


But Sigurdarson’s return, and the way it has been received, has perhaps increased the fun factor at Molineux, especially among those fans so desperate to see him succeed.


That extends to the player himself who is hugely appreciative of the backing he has received.


And while others in his position might understandably be concerned about a long-term contract shortly coming to an end, Sigurdarson is just happy to be back in the frame.


He explains:  “When I came back people were tweeting that it was good to see me back, and I wasn;’t even playing at that stage, just training.


“It has been so good the support I have had from the Wolves fans after the seasons I have had here.


“It has been great, and I really appreciate it.


“I know the Wolves Fancast guys had wanted me to do a celebration if I scored and that would have been great.


“When I came first year it was hard to have fun because I wasn’t sure if I was going to be staying.


“It has been so much fun over the last couple of months in training and so exciting, that feeling of running on the pitch and playing games again.


“I have loved it.


“I am just thinking about the games, the training, keeping myself fit.


“After the season we will see what happens.


“It doesn’t bother me that I am out of contract at the end of the season, I am just enjoying playing.”