A Ruthless League

Defender says Wolves have to produce a reaction

Richard Stearman says Wolves have to produce a reaction to the disappointing defeat at Cardiff and show they have the stomach for the fight in the “ruthless” Sky Bet Championship.

Stearman has revealed that the players were “gutted” in the wake of Tuesday’s 2-1 reverse, having seen the hosts come from behind in the second half to overhaul Matt Doherty’s early strike.

The defender says Head Coach Paul Lambert also made his feelings known, and that now it is all about sticking together as a staff and squad to produce a more positive result against Nottingham Forest on Saturday (3pm).

“You sink or swim in the Championship – it’s a ruthless league,” says Stearman.

“We have a lot of new faces and a few boys who haven’t played in this division.

“It is down to the likes of myself, Danny (Batth) and Eddo (Dave Edwards) to help those lads learn and learn quickly.

“We are at the wrong end of the table and we will struggle to get out of it if we don’t pull our fingers out and start picking up some points.

“Maybe we are going to have to grind out a few results to push us up the league if we can.

“We have to be stronger and we have to concede fewer goals.

“The gaffer was bitterly disappointed after the Cardiff game and he let the boys know.

“No one ever has a problem with that – if it gives everyone a kick up the backside then so be it.

“Then it is all about showing a reaction and performing better next time.

“That is what we need to do now against Nottingham Forest.

“Whoever is selected for that match needs to go out and show a reaction.

“We have to pick ourselves up and stick together and show we can battle out there and not concede goals.

“It is ruthless, dog eat dog in the Championship, and if you are not up to the challenge you don’t succeed.”

Wolves were on course for potentially making it seven points from three games when leading at half time, but struggled to break out for long periods of the second half as Cardiff piled on the pressure, eventually grabbing their two goals.

“It was very frustrating, having scored early, not even to come away with anything,” Stearman added.

“We need to see out games like that to get anything in this division.

“To concede so late, the boys were gutted and devastated.

“We seemed to start a bit slow in the second half, and waited for them to come on to us a little bit.

“We knew their strengths in terms of getting the ball into the box and it was a bit naïve from us to give away so many set pieces.

“As a result we were penned in during the second half and struggled to get out.

“In the main we dealt with what they were doing but they were always going to get chances.

“The first goal was particularly disappointing as I don’t think it was a corner but the decision was given and it is what it is.

“We had to do better and see it out.

“We are a young team and we have to learn quickly and it was disappointing that we knew their gameplan but on the night we were unable to stop it.”