Wolves 0 Blackburn Rovers 3 (Zimba 2, 25, Lonsdale 40)
A ruthless first-half from Blackburn Rovers saw Wolves fall to a 3-0 defeat at the Sir Jack Haywood training ground.
Wolves got off to the worst possible start when Oliver Tipton’s strayed ball was cut out by Chanka Zimba, the striker then found space to calmly slot the ball past the Jackson Smith.
Blackburn limited Wolves’ chances throughout the first-half – Kam Kandola went closest with a bicycle kick which just missed the target.
Moments later however, Blackburn got their second. A blistering counterattack once again saw Zimba get on the score sheet when he managed to glide past the defence and calmly place the ball into the bottom corner.
Things then went from bad to worst with Brandon Lonsdale getting a third for Blackburn just before half-time. A headed ball across the box made it impossible for Lonsdale to miss from three yards and put Rovers in firm control at the break.
Despite the score, Wolves didn’t give up on the game and were far more fluid and dangerous in the second-half. Captain Jack Scott had a decent effort from distance well held by Jordan Eastman, while Theo Corbeanu also went close.
The goal almost came for Wolves when Corbeanu opened up an opportunity for himself only to see his effort come crashing off the bar.
Overall, it was a poor day for Wolves who will rue their defensive errors in the first-half.
Wolves manager Steve Davis believes that there is room for improvement after the defeat.
He said: “It was very much two different halves for us in particular in terms of performance. I thought we started the first-half really poorly, they set their stall really early. Obviously, the mistake from the pass in the first-half didn’t help and we went 1-0 down very early in the game, it doesn’t set a great president for the rest of the game, that made it difficult.
“I thought we had some chances, a lot of crosses in the first-half, even though we didn’t defend particularly well collectively and individually, we still created some opportunities. Second-half we looked a different team, we looked more aggressive and created more opportunities, five or six really good chances.
“Credit to them they set their stool and defended very well so that made it very difficult. I was a little bit concerned about the first-half, the way we approached the game and the way we set ourselves out, our mentality wasn’t there.
“We weren’t clinical today. If you play like we did in the first-half and give yourself a 3-0 score line at half-time to get back from it is very, very difficult, we will learn from it. If we would have approached the first-half as we did with the second-half it wouldn't have been that score line.”
Despite the result, Davis thought attacker Corbeanu played well as Wolves tried to get back into the game.
He stated: “I thought Corbeanu was our main threat, throughout the game I thought he was the one who was going to break the defence and make something happen for us, credit to him for that. Then he had a little go at playing as a number nine down the middle, did equally as well. He has got pace and he has got some skill and made things happen.”
Wolves return to the Premier League under-18s north division with a home game to Stoke City on 4th January at 11am.
04/01 | Stoke City (H)
01/02 | Liverpool (A)
15/02 | Sunderland (H)
22/02 | Middlesbrough (H)
29/02 | West Bromwich Albion (A)
Wolves: Smith, Scott, Estrada, Tipton, Kandola, Bueno (Birtwistle 73), Corbeanu, Parker, Carty (Harkin 78), Abbey (Forrester 46), Hodnett.
Unused subs: Young, Sangare.
Blackburn: Eastman, Pike, Cirino (Durrant 65), Saadi, Boyomo, Pratt, Burns (Gent 65), Harlock, Zimba, Lonsdale (Gilsenan 75), Brennan.
Unused subs: Dowling, Weston.
By Jack Dawson