Wolves' solid defence down to 'natural' relationship between Danny Batth and Richard Stearman

Danny Batth today revealed the secret behind Wolves’ rock-solid defence – his ‘natural’ partnership with Richard Stearman and teamwork.

Danny Batth and Richard Stearman
Danny Batth and Richard Stearman

The hugely popular Brierley Hill-born defender – Wolves’ only ever present in League One this season – is having a ball as part of the division’s tightest back four.

Wolves haven’t conceded for four games – a total of 426 minutes’ play - while the back line has been breached just once in the last six games, and that was Sam Baldock’s penalty in the 3-1 win against Bristol City.

“I’ve known ‘Stears’ for a long time and we’ve played a lot of football together,” said Batth.

“I think it’s a partnership with a really good balance and we’ve got the sort of understanding that comes when you’ve played alongside someone for a while.

“It starts to become natural in terms of what happens next.”

Batth stressed the impressive shutout form is a team effort.

He added: “It’s the sign of a good back four and a good goalkeeper to keep clean sheets but we certainly don’t underestimate the amount of work the lads in front of us do.

“They all work very hard for us as well.

“It comes from a team mentality, a record like we have, which is something we’ve tried to create and now want to build on.”

Batth is one of numerous players to have come through the ranks at Molineux and the camaraderie that flows between the growing number of academy graduates has helped rebuild team spirit after successive relegations.

“It’s good there are a few local lads now involved and it gives the younger players something to aspire to like it did for me,” he said.

“Jack Price has been doing really well, Aaron (McCarey) stepped up and did well, and people are grabbing their chances by the scruff of the neck.”

Batth praised head coach Kenny Jackett for helping to develop the youngsters by giving them their chance and said he had helped instil a healthy working atmosphere.

“The gaffer has been class since he came in,” he said.

“He came to a club which had gone through successive relegations and quickly gave us a base to start with.

“Now we’re looking a real threat going forward as well.

“Sometimes you don’t need to over-complicate things and a lot of the time it’s about consistency and enthusiasm and making sure you are fully prepared for when the games come along.”

Wolves go into tomorrow’s visit of Port Vale seeking their seventh straight win.

But with an aerial bombardment expected, Batth isn’t taking anything for granted and he insisted remaining grounded was a key factor in their recent success.

“It’s a case of looking at what we’ve got to do in the next game and focusing one game at a time,” he said.

“We’re a fairly new team which has had to gel and as your understanding gets better, the cohesion improves and so have performances.

“A big part about recent results has been finding a good consistency but also everyone keeping their feet on the ground.

“We’ve had a few new players during the season which has also given us a lift while also getting to grips with the league a bit more.

“There’s still work to be done and we just need to keep winning games and winning enough games to get where we want to be at the end of the season.

“We’ve not done anything yet – if you ask me in 15 games we’ll know for sure whether it’s been a success.”

Batth believes the Wolves fans are similarly keeping their feet on the ground.

“I don’t think after the Brentford game (won 3-0) the supporters will have got too carried away,” he added.

“They’ll realise there’s still a lot of play for.

“A lot of our games are away from home as well and that has to be taken into account.

“It’s just a case of steadying the ship and keeping ticking along.”

Comments for: "Wolves' solid defence down to 'natural' relationship between Danny Batth and Richard Stearman"

Bigbadwolftoo

I like Richard Stearman! Yes he drops clangers, yes he loses his cool....but he is a trier with some ability and progressing in a positive way. He is not far away from being at least a solid championship central defender level player, with work could be more. With KJ and coaching team input, I think he will progress. He does have a chance of making it much better.....lets see, but he is WOLVES and I back him!

Bleydh

Good to see Stears getting some deserved parise from a fellow team mate.

Our defensive record speaks for itself yet still he cops a load of criticism.

oldergold

It,s great to see local talent getting in to any side these days, we all have international players in all league,s and the team would not be where we are without them, but local always make you feel Black country pride. utw

Selly park wolf

I know Stearman will always have his critics, myself included in the past, however for the way he has dug in and knuckled down this season I hope he is rewarded with a new 18 month contract.

Despite all the criticism he has always given 100% ,never refused to play for the club like some we could mention, and although he has been sent off needlessly in the past I believe it's time that the fans gave him a bit of credit!

His critics are always quick to mention the odd mistake he mistakes but then again don't every player?

Some will say he has found his level but I for one think he has improved under KJ and in partnering DB.

Well done Stears keep it up kid!

Solentwolves

Solentwolves

Sorry - I just want to agree with Selly park wolf.

Stokewolf64

100% agree SPW..

UTW

derbyshirewolf

I too would like to agree with Selly Park Wolf. Stearman has improved immensely this season, showing greater maturity ,concentration, and confidence, with the result that the percentage of errors in his play has diminished. However, a couple of things do niggle me. 1) Why is there still no sign of a new contract being offered to him (the dark arts of Mr. Moxey here, or am I just being a paranoid conspiracy theorist?)? 2 ) He is, for all his improvement, not left footed, and the defence would be better balanced with a left footed central defender. However, perhaps this is, at this stage, only a minor issue.

Media Wolf Pete

Hear it on good authority that Stears and the club have agreed to put any contract talks on hold until the end of the season. Stears won't play L1 next season, however, if we go up, presume he'll want a decent agreement and salary or he'll move on a free as he'll be out of contract