Under-23s must take positives into promotion push, says Edwards

After getting knocked out of the Premier League Cup in the last 16, Rob Edwards admitted his high-flying Wolves under-23 side were not their usual selves.

Ryan Giles’ second-half finish was not enough for Wolves to secure passage into the quarter-finals of the youth competition, with Derby County claiming a 2-1 victory at Pride Park.

Following the game, head coach Edwards said he was disappointed with his team’s slow start to the game which left them having the play catch-up.

On Premier League Cup defeat

“I thought Derby were the better team. I was disappointed with the way we started the game, as I felt we were too passive and allowed them a bit too much territory.

“We allowed them to get a foothold in the game and grow quicker into the game than we did and after going 1-0 down after just a few minutes it was always going to be an uphill task.

“We could have found a way to get back into it, their goalkeeper pulled off a couple of excellent saves and we had a good few chances, a couple of one-on-ones and a good shot from distance from Ryan Giles, against a good team.

“We ended the game really well, although Derby did well to protect their lead and see the game out, which we expected them to do.

“But for the standards which we have set; if you look at the game against Southampton last Monday night, for instance, the difference in performance was quite big, but as poor as we were, we were still in the game towards the end.”

On being forced into changes

“We’re disappointed to go out of the cup as we don’t want to lose any games, but there was enough fighting spirit in the second-half to think there’s something there.

“Obviously losing Niall Ennis so early on in the first-half and with Elliot Watt on international duty and Austin Samuels out injured, we made a few changes from the team that played Southampton which were forced on us, and maybe that upset the rhythm.”

On promotion push

“The lads have been very consistent, putting in good performances all season, and today was a bit of a dip. From the start we didn’t look like ourselves, but we’ve got to recapture that, rest up, recover, and get focused and ready for a real big push in the league.

“We’ve got four games left now, starting with Newcastle away next weekend, so we need to take the momentum and the positives from the ending of this game into next week.”