Gary O’Neil praised the character of his Wolves team as they were able to carry out his game plan to perfection and claim their first three points at Molineux this season to down Manchester City.
Although the reigning Premier League champions hit back after Wolves took a lead into the break, O’Neil was delighted with how his players didn’t let their heads drop and continued to work to the pre-match plans, which allowed Hee Chan Hwang to score the winning goal.
On adding three points at home
“I’m pleased, of course. The season has not started well for us and it’s been a tough start, fixture-wise, with Liverpool, Brighton and Man City at home, and away games are always tough in the Premier League, so it’s not been an easy start.
“But the lads have stayed committed in every game, have given everything in every game, and the prep went well the last couple of days, the game looked exactly how we expected it to look today, and the lads stuck to the plan and delivered a fantastic performance – which carried some threat as well as being very solid.”
What it means 😆 pic.twitter.com/1v5TBnB5dz— Wolves (@Wolves) September 30, 2023
On the game plan coming off
“We needed to find a way to be solid, which the lads were, and then have enough attacking players to carry us up the pitch in the team.
“Pedro [Neto], Channy [Hwang] and Cunha, we had to trust them to do real good offensive jobs, so we can use their ability to get us up the pitch, and it worked very well.
“We prepped for the game really well and Manchester City came with the structure that we expected them to be in, and the lads saw all the pictures that we needed to work on, but it’s still not easy to carry it off, so they managed to do a great job.”
On going on to win after conceding
“It was a big moment for me. You could see that I was on the pitch at that point because we didn’t deserve to go 1-1. They have the ability to put a free-kick in the top corner, and now you just have to respond.
“It was a big blow for us, but we needed to reset and not let all the good work we’d done go to nothing. I was trying to make the lads reset because they needed to get their minds back on what they were doing and make sure it looked like it had done for the previous 65.
“Getting another breakaway goal is always a possibility when you have Pedro and Channy in the team, so it was a really good performance.”
Molineux celebrates three big points 🙌 pic.twitter.com/OThcO9ngAr— Wolves (@Wolves) September 30, 2023
On the best result of his managerial career
“Beating the best team in the world and possibly the best team ever is a massive result for us, especially off the back of a tough start to the season.
“It’s a big result and it’s hard to know because they all feel big at the time. When you win your first game as Wolves manager it feels big, when I beat Liverpool last season it felt big.
“But beating Manchester City and where they are, they’re unbeaten so far, European champions, and especially where we were and what people were saying about us from outside, it was impressive.”
On taking the momentum into next weekend
“We’re just trying to win games of football. We’ve done that today, but we’ve got another tough one coming next year.
“Villa won 6-1 today, and they’re in the top four, so I think we’ll have completed the full set next week of playing the top four at home.
“It’s another tough game, but if the prep can go as well as it did, the lads can stick to the plan and find the right structure, then we’ve got good enough players to create problems.”