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Everybody's Ready

PUBLISHED

08:30 28th March 2014

Edwards highlights squad contribution

Wolves will be taking almost 9,000 supporters to MK Dons tomorrow (3pm) – their highest away league following in almost 25 years.

But it was the reaction of a far smaller away contingent at Crawley Town ten days ago that continued to convince midfielder Dave Edwards of the ever-strengthening bond between players and fans.

Wolves had lost at Crawley, their fifth league defeat of the season, after a disappointing performance.

And yet the support shown at the final whistle by the near 2,000 travelling contingent – many of whom had travelled a long distance on a Tuesday night – offered immediate inspiration to the crestfallen players.

“You can really see there’s a good relationship between the players and the fans at the moment,” says Edwards.

“They have got right behind us this season and you can really see that from the game at Crawley.

“If someone would have said last year that we could have lost 2-1 at Crawley I think the fans would have been ready to hang, draw and quarter someone and you could have understood it!

“But even after that game on a Tuesday night they were still there clapping and supporting us at the end.

“The players really acknowledge how important the fans are to the club and it is good to see that we are all on the same wavelength which I don’t think we have been over the last couple of years.

“It is a credit to them, the gaffer and the players that we are one big team at the moment because you need that to be a successful club.

“And it is going to be an incredible game to take that many fans to MK Dons.

“It’s going to be some atmosphere.

“It’s a lovely stadium with a nice pitch and will hopefully be a good footballing spectacle.

“We know how important it is that we put on a show, particularly with how many fans we are taking.

“With the confidence we have picked up from the last couple of games then hopefully we should be ready to go and get a good result.”

It was after defeat at Crawley that Edwards was one of a number of players brought into the team to freshen things up amid a gruelling recent schedule.

The Welsh international responded with a goal in each of the subsequent victories against Sheffield United and Colchester, as well as good claims for an ‘assist’ in each as his movement deceived the goalkeepers to allow James Henry and Michael Jacobs crosses to creep inside the posts.

Edwards admits there was nothing he and others on the fringes could do but applaud the winning run of nine games that propelled Wolves to the top of Sky Bet League One, but that all were ready and waiting to come in when required.

“It’s nice to be playing and of course nice to be winning – it’s always good to be a part of that,” he adds.

“Hopefully we can carry it going and get ourselves over thefinish line sooner rather than later.

“It is sometimes difficult when you’re not playing but obviously when the team are doing as well as they were no one can have any complaints.

“I have known in the past at different places and with different people there are sometimes hopes that results don’t happen so that you can get in the team.

“That’s definitely not been the case at Wolves this season.

“All the lads who haven’t been in the team have been desperate for the team to keep winning and have been concentrating on being ready when called upon.

“It is testimony to the lads that have come in in terms of how ready they were and how they have looked after themselves while they have been waiting – it’s credit both to the players and the management team.

“For me it was just a case of keeping ready.

“I hadn’t played any reserve games but have done a lot of 11 v 11 work in training.

“The gaffer is very keen for us to train in that 11 v 11 situation so we all know how he wants the team to play and what is required of the different roles.

“I’ve had a few substitute appearances when it is sometimes difficult to come straight in and get right up to the pace of the game so it’s been good to get a couple of starts.

“With the front four or five we’ve got at the moment the lads can probably play anywhere across that line.

“You look at the game on Tuesday and you’ve got Michael Jacobs and James Henry coming in off the line and then I may end up wide at times.

“Everyone is able to naturally rotate and I think that helps us to keep the ball really well and get in between the lines.

“That has helped us look dangerous over the last couple of games.”

And those goals?

“I’ve always wanted to get myself in the box and score goals,” he replies.

“Luckily at the moment I am doing that.

“Especially when James Henry has got the ball in the right, you know he is going to put the ball in the area and he’s a joy to play with in that respect.

“It’s the same with Michael Jacobs as well and you always know you might get a chance if you get yourself in there and can get half a yard.

“I should have had two or three goals on Tuesday night and that was particularly frustrating, especially the one straight after half time.”

It was shortly after missing that chance that Edwards was withdrawn from the action having indicated to Head Coach Kenny Jackett that it was probably a wise move.

After his recent lack of action since a foot injury it was mainly precautionary, but the ??-year-old is now itching to play a key role over the remaining eight games.

“There wasn’t any injury worry or anything like that, it was more a precaution,” he says.

“My last start before last Saturday was Preston, a good two-and-a-half months ago, so to have played 90 minutes at Sheffield United and then 90 again on Tuesday would have been a big ask with regards with being ready for tomorrow again.

“With the position myself and Lee Evans play there is a lot of running involved and it can be demanding.

“With us being in a good position at the time it was a good time to maybe change it particularly with someone like Pricey being ready to come on and with everyone knowing the system.

“The gaffer needs a fully fit squad and I know my body well enough to know the times when I need to protect it and it was one of those calls.

“There are eight games left and I just want to play a part and hopefully help us get some more wins.

“A few more goals would be great as well!

“If we can string some more results together hopefully we can get across that finish line it would be great for everyone connected with the club.”

*Wolves have sold out of their allocation for tomorrow's game and anyone without a ticket is urged not to travel to the stadium.  Click here to view all the latest matchday advice from MK Dons.

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