Mason says togetherness driving Wolves on
Matchwinner Joe Mason highlighted the togetherness of the Wolves squad as a key factor in their 1-0 derby day victory over Aston Villa at Molineux on Saturday.
Mason steered home the game's only goal in the 15th minute, but afterwards was keen to heap praise on his team-mates after they secured a second huge derby win in a week.
"I've never been part of a team that's so close-knit," the striker said. "It's very tight-knit, and it's great to have the fans on our side as well. Football can sometimes be a bit out of touch, but you could see at the end when everyone did the Icelandic clap that it's really tight at the moment.
"The manager put a lot of importance on that togetherness, and it's showing on the pitch. We worked so hard for each other for 95 minutes and you can really tell how close we all are - it's brilliant."
Mason admitted that - as well as securing the three points - his winning goal would go a long way to erase memories of his missed chance at Sheffield Wednesday a fortnight ago.
He continued: Obviously with the chance I had a few weeks ago I wanted to get a goal as soon as possible to get that out of my head. It has been playing on my mind quite a bit - it was one of those horror moments that you wished had never happened, but I've come through it stronger and the goal today will help me kick on and do me wonders.
"It was great to see it hit the back of the net today - after what happened at Sheffield Wednesday I just concentrated on keeping the ball down, and it's great to get a goal after not scoring for a while."
Mason's goal was the highlight of a highly impressive display in the number ten role, and although he admitted to still not being 100% fit after his hernia problems earlier in the season, he was delighted with his influence on the game.
He said: "I'm happy to play anywhere but I think I do my best work in that number ten role. I'm not the biggest, so I'd struggle to play up top on my own, but I like getting on the ball, turning and running at people and making things difficult for defenders.
"It's perfect for me - getting into those little pockets and making things happen, and I was happy with the way I played today. I'm still not 100% fit, but with every game I play I feel better and better."
Saturday's victory was Wolves' fifth in their last nine games in all competitions, and Mason was adamant that the squad should set its sights high as the second half of the season gathers pace.
"There's still a lot of games left to play," he added. "We've been playing really well recently and we're getting the results now. Hopefully we can go on a run now and keep that momentum going. Everyone's feeling really good at the moment, working extremely hard and confidence is high.
"For me personally, double figures needs to be my target now, and I'm confident I can do that."