Wolves take the derby hon­ours against Birm­ing­ham

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Liam Batch

KENNY JACK­ETT be­lieves a tight­en­ing up of the Wolves defence proved cru­cial as his side ended their three-match los­ing run with vic­tory over Mid­lands ri­vals Birm­ing­ham City.

The away side went ahead early on through David Ed­wards be­fore Sheyi Ojo dou­bled their lead deep into the sec­ond half with a fine curl­ing ef­fort to cap-off an im­pres­sive dis­play and en­sure Wolves left with the brag­ging rights.

And Jack­ett was equally im­pressed with his play­ers’ ef­forts in defence, in­clud­ing re­cent loan sign­ing Mike Wil­liamson at cen­tre-back, as well as winger Nathan Byrne go­ing for­ward.

“It is a tough place to go, we needed the win,” he said.

“We had con­ceded nine goals in the last three matches and that doesn’t give us a chance.

“We are de­lighted to win the lo­cal derby ob­vi­ously and it was im­por­tant we recog­nised where the side were and what we needed to do to be suc­cess­ful, and I think we did that.

“I thought Mike Wil­liamson’s talk­ing and or­gan­i­sa­tion was ex­actly what we needed in this present time, we’re de­lighted that he was keen to come to Wolves on loan and he sees it as a big op­por­tu­nity for him­self.

“I thought Nathan Byrne did well too and gave us some­thing dif­fer­ent.

“Some­times it’s dif­fi­cult to make the tran­si­tion from League One to the Cham­pi­onship and I was pleased with his con­tri­bu­tion, he gave Birm­ing­ham prob­lems.”

De­spite a good start from the Blues it was Wolves who took the lead in the 12th minute when Ed­wards cap­i­talised on a calami­tous mix-up in Birm­ing­ham’s defence to coolly slot home past To­masz Kuszczak.

Wolves nearly dou­bled their lead when Nathan Byrne set off on a surg­ing run be­fore curl­ing a spec­u­la­tive 25-yard ef­fort nar­rowly wide.

The home side failed to cre­ate much in the way of chances in the first half but did have an op­por­tu­nity to equalise when David Davis’ flashed his ef­fort just wide.

Wolves’ Benik Afobe caused the Birm­ing­ham defence prob­lems all af­ter­noon and af­ter an in­ci­sive break-away he laid the ball into the path of Kevin McDon­ald whose pow­er­ful ef­fort was ex­pertly saved by Kuszczak.

Birm­ing­ham sim­ply couldn’t cope with Wolves’ pace on the counter-at­tack and found them­selves over­run fre­quently through­out the sec­ond-half, while the ma­jor­ity of their own chances came from dis­tance as they strug­gled to click.

And Wolves made sure of the points in the 84th minute when 18 year-old Ojo made room for him­self in­side the box be­fore curl­ing ac­cu­rately past the help­less Kuszczak.

Gary Rowett would have hoped for bet­ter from his side in a game which marked his first an­niver­sary as Birm­ing­ham City man­ager.

Rowett said: “In the first ten min­utes we started quite brightly and then lost our way a lit­tle bit and con­ceded a poor goal.

“It shows the progress we’ve made that a team like Wolves came here prob­a­bly to come and take a point and be de­fen­sively strong.

“It was up to us to break them down but we didn’t show the qual­ity that we needed.

“We con­ceded two poor goals and in games like this the first goal is al­ways cru­cial and we gave them that.

“We needed to be more in­ven­tive and show more com­po­sure on the ball, that’s some­thing I felt we didn’t do well enough.

“Wolves did a job on us and won the game de­servedly, we con­ceded two very poor goals.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Images

GAME OVER: Wolves’ Sheyi Ojo, left, cel­e­brates scor­ing their sec­ond goal with Conor Coady, right

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