The best occasions

Edwards all set for derby day at Villa

Dave Edwards is all set for his next Midlands derby tomorrow keen for Wolves to repeat the awayday successes at Birmingham and Newcastle.

Wolves make the short trip to tackle Aston Villa in a 5.30pm kick off keen to bounce back from successive defeats prior to the international break but knowing they have already emerged victorious from some high profile awaydays this season.

Edwards is a stalwart of many Midlands derbies during his nine years at Molineux, and can’t wait for the next instalment.

“Derby days are the best occasions in football – at the end of the day you could be feeling ecstatic or horrendous,” he said.

“And I’ve got mates who are Wolves fans, and mates who are Villa fans.

“The West Brom games are always huge, the biggest of the all, and the Birmingham ones are always big and we managed to go there earlier in the season and get a win.

“You could see how much that meant to the fans.

“I’ve been on both sides...the disappointing Albion defeat at Molineux, or the last couple of seasons beating Blues at St Andrew’s.

“There so much extra spice in the games. Although it’s 90 minutes and 11 v 11 it does feel different, it’ll be more manic than a normal game.

“It’s mad to see that Villa are in the Championship.

“It’s a great occasion for us to go there and a great place to go and play our football.

“Everything is geared up for it being a classic.

“I’m sure the Wolves fans will be wary of them having a new manager...but I think it’s a good time for us to go and play them and get at them, be attacking, be bold, press high up the pitch and really give it a good go.

“If we sit back and let them have the ball it’s not going to work.

“It’s sure to be a manic first 15 to 20 minutes as there always is in derby games.”

Wolves’ previous away derby this season finished with some enthusiastic scenes in front of the delighted away following, after the 3-1 victory at St Andrew’s against Birmingham City.

Heavily involved was Head Coach Walter Zenga, and Edwards is enjoying playing for the Italian gaffer.

“He really does have that passion – it’s not for show,” says the midfielder.

“He’s exactly like that at the training ground. And I know from speaking from him how proud he is to be at the club.

“He wants to push that in all the players’ minds.

“He’s got a few sayings which he always tells us, like ‘the ball is never out, the game is never over’. It’s a never-say-die attitude and I think that will help us out this year.

“Barring the Barnsley debacle every game has been close and we’ve always created chances, which is something we perhaps weren’t doing last year.

“We always look like we’ve got a goal in us.

“People are probably fed up of me saying it but it’s so important you’re consistent in this league.

“After Newcastle and Brentford I thought we were on track. I don’t think we’re far off. I hope the fans are excited about the direction we’re heading in.

“I’m enjoying being involved in it and I’m sure the manager believes he’s close to getting it how he wants it."