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Delivering When It Counted

PUBLISHED

11:11 4th May 2014

Gaffer hails second half run

Kenny Jackett has paid tribute to his players for the New Year run of form which propelled them to promotion.

After a hard-fought first half to the campaign with Wolves in behind Leyton Orient and Peterborough, they responded to defeat at Gillingham with a blistering run of results to emerge with Brentford as the main promotion contenders towards the end of the season.

And that run – 54 points from the final 21 games – saw Wolves achieve promotion and the title with something to spare thanks to gaps of 17 and nine points respectively.

“If you are looking at the first half or even two thirds of the season we were in third place for quite a long time,” says the Head Coach.

“We went top briefly and were then back in third and if you look back, I think it was March 11th when we were two points ahead of third.

“Yesterday morning we were 15 points clear of third place and have finished up 17 clear.

“It was a really close race for two thirds of the season but what really told was us winning 17 of the last 21 games.

“We have won 17, drawn three and lost one out of the last 21 and that is the time when it really counts.

“Over the first half of the season we didn’t really do much more than make sure no one went away from us.

“We did enough, but in the second half of the season we played some good football and the type of football that will help the club going forward.”

The closing weeks of the season have seen Wolves achieve promotion, then the title, and then yesterday some great Molineux celebrations with the lifting of the trophy and lap of honour in front of nearly 30,000.

Since achieving promotion at Crewe Wolves haven’t taken their foot off the gas, taking ten points from their final four games.

Jackett added:  “The biggest relief I felt was when we got promoted.

“There was a sticky period of maybe three weeks when we looked like we were going to do it and it was there on the horizon but since we have got promoted I think we have been pretty powerful and from there I could see us going on and being champions.

“Even waking up yesterday I was pretty confident from what I’d seen of the players this week that they wanted to play well and send 30,000 people home optimistic for next season because we are going to need them.”

Wolves have also dealt with the expectation associated with being title favourites with some aplomb, with Jackett pleased with how his squad has coped with the pressure.

“People are looking to knock you down when you are favourites and you can only throw it away,” he added.

“It is a different type of pressure and a pressure you need to relish and embrace.

“Wolves in League One is a different type of game, they are not regular games but more akin to a third round cup tie every single week because of the nature of it.

“That’s not to say you can’t come through it and still win, but we had to make sure we understood what was coming against us and were capable of coming through it.

“We have managed to do that, and in particular the players have, with flying colours.”

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