Shocked... and delighted

Doc's thoughts on awards hat trick

Matt Doherty admitted he was both “shocked” and “delighted” at his clean sweep of awards at Wolves’ End of Season dinner.

The Irish defender became the first player to claim all three big awards in Wolves’ recent history as he claimed both Fans’ and Players’ Player of the Year, and Goal of the Season, at Telford International Centre on Tuesday night.

“It was unexpected,” he admitted.

“I didn’t think I would get a clean sweep like that and I was a bit shocked but absolutely delighted.

“I thought I might win the Goal one but didn’t think I was going to win the Players’ Player.

“The goal award was nice as I don’t score many.

“And to get the vote from my team-mates, the players I train with every day, was a special one to win.

“And then the fans, who pay good money to come and watch us week-in and week-out.

“It is nice to think that they were happy with my performances in what was a disappointing season for all of us as a team.

“I just want to say a massive thankyou to the fans.

“We have had a tough season on the pitch, but they have supported us throughout.

“Hopefully I have provided a few moments of happiness during the season and want to thank all those who voted for me.”

Doherty admitted it was strange to hear his team-mates so effusive in their praise of him during the video montages for each of his awards.

“I almost got a bit shy and embarrassed when I saw all those,” he says.

“I see these boys every day and have the banter with them.

“To see them talk so highly of you is really nice to see.”

It was from just before Christmas that Doherty won a place in the team in a previously unfamiliar role of left back.

From there he went from strength to strength, not only impressing for Wolves but doing enough to earn his first senior international call-up with the Republic of Ireland.

So much so that even though he was battling for regular football in the first half of the season, he rates it as his best campaign so far in his lengthy spell at Molineux.

“I think the awards help show it was probably my best year,” he says.

“I didn’t play too much in the first half of the season, and there was the realisation that when I got back in, I had to stay in.

“I couldn’t afford to come out again and have a season where I was mainly on the bench – it was up to me to make sure that didn’t happen.

“I remember being at the awards last year and seeing the lads who won go up and I was thinking that must have felt so good.

“After half a season it wasn’t looking like it would happen for me but I managed to turn it around and that feels pretty special.

“Performance-wise you are always looking to do as well as you possibly can and I have to make sure I keep my standards up next year.”