Sheffield Wednesday 0 Wolves 0 - player ratings

Wolves correspondent Tim Spiers rates the players after a good performance in the 0-0 draw at Sheffield Wednesday.

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Carl Ikeme

Produced one of the saves of his season early in the match to deny Sasso with a stunning stop at full stretch. Spilled Fletcher's effort soon after but made up for it when blocking Forestieri's rebound.

Was very solid in the final stages and came from his line to claim a couple of dangerous crosses. His best performance for a few weeks. 8/10

Conor Coady

The Coady experiment continues to work. Forestieri often drifted out to the left but that wasn't a problem for Coady who had the better of him for most of the game.

Created a couple of chances with searching balls over the defence for Bodvarsson and Mason. 7/10

Danny Batth

Wolves are defending with far more sturdiness and composure away from home at the moment and Batth again epitomised this.

Threw his body at everything and prevented Ikeme from having to make saves on a number of occasions.

Had his manager cursing when he sent a late clearance straight to a Wednesday player, but other than that it was very hard to fault him here. Rewarded Lambert's faith after poor games against Bristol City and QPR. 8/10

Richard Stearman

Still a puzzle as to why he couldn't get in the team for two months. He's been instrumental in Wolves' recent good away results at QPR, Nottingham Forest and here.

Read the game superbly and Wednesday struggled to get any change out of him whatsoever.

There's currently no deal in place to sign Stearman permanently in the summer. With the difference he's made, that's something that Wolves might want to address. 8/10

Matt Doherty

Unlucky not to score when goalkeeper Keiren Westwood brilliantly tackled him in the box late in the first half. No, wait, that's was just the visually impaired referee's bizarre take on it.

Yes, Doherty somehow failed to win a penalty. He also had a shot cleared off the line. Good defensively too. 7/10

Jack Price

A tough test against Barry Bannan and Wednesday's midfield - one he failed in November (and was duly dropped).

Much more accomplished here and while he didn't exert as much influence going forward as he'd have liked this was another impressive display. In good form. 7/10

David Edwards

Looked like he'd been asked to play a more withdrawn role, with Lambert no doubt conscious of what happened in the recent reverse fixture when Wolves were overrun in midfield

Kept things simple and tidy. A disciplined performance. 7/10

Helder Costa

Not at the races. Latched onto a Bodvarsson flick-on for a first half shot but other than that he was barely involved in front of goal.

Some nice interplay but he looked tired and it was no surprise to see him replaced. Just not his day. 5/10

Joe Mason

Only he will know how he managed to miss an open goal from three yards.

Yes it bounced awkwardly and surprised him. But come on, there are absolutely no excuses for a professional footballer doing that.

It's such a shame because otherwise he had a decent game. Hit the post with a great effort from 15 yards, got another couple of decent shots away and found himself in some excellent positions.

Very good to see him back and the 90 minutes will do him good. Offers Wolves a different option. 7/10

Connor Ronan

The boy is going to be some player.

Handed his full debut aged 18 but handled it like an experienced pro, so much so that Lambert said it was the finest debut he'd ever seen a youngster make. Felt his way into the game early on and then visibly grew in confidence.

His touch really is marvellous, his technique superb and his eye for a pass clinical, as shown when a clever reverse pass almost played Edwards in. Great vision and intelligence in his game.

Looks about 12 years old and lacks physicality. But who cares when you can make the ball sing. And for someone so slight he can fairly whack it too. Just ask Sam Hutchinson who was knocked flat out by a Ronan free kick.

Teed up Mason for that shot that hit the post and soldiered on despite some rough treatment from the Wednesday players until one challenge too many forced him off.

Didn't look out of place whatsoever. Expect to see a lot more of him from now on - a star in the making. 8/10

Jon Dadi Bodvarsson

A very welcome return to form for the big Icelandic striker.

This was the Bodvarsson of the opening weeks of the season - he won endless headers, he relished the physical challenge against Wednesday's centre halves and he was a livewire in and around the box, not least when he helped Edwards' header onto the bar with his thigh (almost the old 'goal that just hit him and went in' that Bodvarsson is so craving).

Pulled wide too often but that just showed how keen he was to get on the ball.

His presence gave Wolves another option as he holds the ball up so well. And it was no coincidence that Bodvarsson played so well with Mason alongside him. The pair are an effective combination. 8/10

Substitutes

Ivan Cavaleiro (for Costa, 61)

Like the man he replaced, Cavaleiro was well below par.

Produced nothing of note. And to be honest he just didn't look up for it, as showcased in the 94th minute when he stood watching Dicko send the ball into the six-yard box. If he'd gambled at the near post Cavaleiro could have had a tap-in.

He was last this lifeless away at Cardiff City. Playing two games in the space of three or four days seems to be an issue for the Portuguese winger as he continues to adapt to English football. 5/10

Dicko (for Ronan, 68)

His introduction and a change of system to 4-4-2 coincided with Wolves' attacks petering out.

Didn't have the impact he would have wanted to. Got in behind in that last-minute attack, but otherwise he didn't threaten Wednesday's goal. 6/10

Subs not used: Burgoyne, Iorfa, Hause, Saville, Enobakhare.

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Comments for: "Sheffield Wednesday 0 Wolves 0 - player ratings"

Albrightondek

Well, those ratings overall look a bit better than we've seen for sometime. A pity that Mason fluffed the chance which could have decided the match, but it confirms my view that he plays best when alongside a big centre forward up front which at the moment is Bodvarsson.

The big talking point though is the impact made by Ronan. This is a youngster I've watched on a regular basis over the last year or so playing for the U18/21/23's. In all that time I've never seen him play a bad game, and have frequently suggested that he will be someone to look out for along with Enobakhare and Ennis. There is now a manager in charge who fully recognizes the talent that resides within our midst, and does not have any fear in giving them the opportunity to show what they can do.

Slowly but surely, the wheel is turning as Lambert is defining his best players for his squad - be they from the "old guard", the "new recruits", or from the academy. He needs to dispose of eight or nine players currently in the first team squad during this transfer window and bring in two or three quality players. For the first time in a while, I'm feeling more optimistic about the future.

Ritchie

There is now a manager in charge that recognises the talent of the academy, I do believe Kenny Jackett won div1 by a country mile with at least two thirds of the academy in the squad and it was Jackett that gave Bright his debut? or is your words aimed at Zenga who had enough on his plate trying to fathom out his 31 man 1st team squad never mind the academy.......

Ye Olde South Bank

The brightest spot, for my money, was young Conor Ronan's debut performance. Many, many congratulations indeed to the young fellah - he must be absolutely buzzing inside this morning, and his family must be oh, so proud of him.

Is this, potentially, the greatest talent the club have unearthed since a sparkling, 17 year-old Robbie Keane blew us all away at Carrow Road? Sure, we need to keep our feet on the ground, but let's hope so.

jezmox

A few weeks ago we were not only beaten but completely outplayed by SW. It appears that Lambert has made progress already. We just need a cutting edge. The standard of refereeing in the matches ive seen this season has been very poor. Bad decisions, either too nit picky or letting too much go. The only ref ive seen in recent weeks who had a decent game was the one against QPR. I sit in the the north bank week in week out and for the last few seasons the standard has been awful. They are just not good enough!

The Flying Winger

A New Year, A New Beginning A New Owner, A New CEO.

These are the New Year wishes.

Gone are the days of indecision on transfers and pointless comments.

Targets have been identified , talks concluded, contracts near to being signed.

Players on the fringe or foreign intake who have not come up to expectations from the old regime and new regime are close to leaving the club.

EBL is close to returning from his loan.

Backroom staff have been evaluated and decisions to be made.

Fans are the first to be informed of transfers completed.

The new team will be ready to play together from the second week in January.

Out of Darkness Cometh Light.

Shewolf1943

Hope the good fairy Thelwell grants all your wishes.

Capelwolf

A STAR IS BORN. This game was probably one of the most significant games played in recent years by Wolves in that it marked the full debut of a player who can go on to be a Wolves great. He gave the Wolves the tempo that was missing against QPR and he was dictating the game by midway through the first half. He was even entrusted with a direct free kick in that first half and duly laid out one of the Wednesday wall. A brilliant performance and the kid must now be in the starting line-up. We haven't seen him at Molineux yet where he might just dictate a different tempo and remove the opposition's perceived level of comfort when they play their own expansive counter attacking games in that Wolves will be a completely different and unknown tactical entity. He will save us millions in the transfer market.We now have the rest of the season to build the midfield around him in readiness for next. He will be the victim of rough treatment as we saw at Hillsborough and the only downside is his lack of physicality, but so what? Play him. I would rather have him dictating tempo than Price or do we play Ronan and Price and leave out Edwards, who remains at the moment our most likely source of a goal. Yes Mason missed a sitter but overall I thought he had a cracking game and he is a goalscorer, albeit not prolific, but again he must play. Overall, a super display where we completely outplayed Sheffield Wednesday. Now let Ronan give us that intensity at Molineux and I bet our home results improve.

The Flying Winger

Capelwolf, a very good summary of an exciting prospect and Mason will come good if he can have some games with Daddi.

Ritchie

Lets prey he stays a little longer than the last Irish star we unearthed aye......

Farmer Ted

I haven't seen Connor Ronan yet, but all the reports from Albrightondek on his progress over the last year or so and the rave reports from media and fellow players on his debut yesterday bode very well. The big worry is not overplaying him in these early months. Fortunately, from the way he's using young Bright it seems we have a manager that will handle that aspect of his young career very well. My New Year Wish is for him to make his home debut against the Villa and set up Dicko and/or Mr Bod for the winning goal. I shall then enjoy Sunday lunchtime in the pub where far too many Villa supporters have started wearing their abominable claret and blue regalia. It enough to put a bloke off his pint...or two!

Albrightondek

FT - You're right about the danger of overplaying him, and I would guess that Lambert will be very selective in choosing which matches will be appropriate to continue his development. As and when you get to see him play, I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Having just got back in I've read Tim Spies latest article in which he compares him to Robbie Keane. In terms of potential, I would agree, but in terms of playing style I would suggest he plays more like Jack Grealish of Villa. He's quick, turns on a sixpence, possesses great awareness with an eye for a killer pass.

Might not play in the cup match next saturday, as there is another round of the Checkatrade Trophy the following Tuesday in which Sellars may want both him and Bright to play in. So perhaps you might get your wish and see him for the first time against Villa.

Black Country Wanderer

Lets not get carried away with Ronans display,as good as it was

Hes still very young ,and lacks that bit of physicality he will need to survive in this league

We saw how the SW players targeted him when they saw his skill,and that will happen a lot more as his star ascends

I'm not saying he isn't a great prospect,he is,just reign in the expectations a little, till hes had more games and added a bit of muscle

We saw how well Iorfa and Hause played when first introduced,Iorfa was being called a world beater by many then,its a different story now isn't it?

Very few players at 18/19 become first team fixtures,as their bodies have not stopped growing,and they lack the experience that comes with games played

All that said,he does look some player in the making, and I wish him well for the future ahead

The Flying Winger

B C W, wise words many a "star" etc has been dimmed after being discovered, careful development will be key.

Ritchie

Equally as important is the lads mentality, I saw a skinny George Best at 17, he was ready, Whiteside at 17, he was ready, our own Keane at 17/18, he was ready and of course Rooney at 16 and boy was he ready.

ImSparktacus

Ronan had a great debut. the tackle that took him out deserved more than a yellow card. Ronan's performance was in marked contrast to Cavaleiro's when he came on, both in terms of performance and attitude.

Ikeme's save was special, we'd all got our hands to our heads thinking it was in and then in a flash the ball was safely over the bar. A good game we deserved to win, Cavaleiro's attitude was the only disappointment. Paid all that money to do a dream job and not look bothered. Words fail me.

Very Old Gold

Over the years I have seen many brilliant young lads make a starring debut in the first team. During the war several lads were pressed into service and surprised everyone with their abilities. There was Cameron Buchanan who made his debut at 14 - but never came near playing for Wolves in the League In 1938-9 two lads named Steen and Mullen were declared to have brilliant futures. I watched Steen after the war in the Third Division (North) at Carlisle, There was a young chap named William Ambrose Wright who played in the first team on Autumn 1939. I wonder what happened to him?

How many people remember Gerry Mannion, an England Under 23 International at 19 then disappeared into Division 3. Too many young lads flatter in the excitement of their first few matches only to fall by the wayside, for whatever reason. Do not count your chickens, even after they have hatched. Wait until they are fully fledged.

Let us hope that young Ronan keeps his head and his talent and becomes a new Robbie Keane. He has a long way to go yet.

BeeCee

Very Old Gold.

Well said my friend. I have over the last couple of years mentioned many times about the throw away line "one for the future" that emanates from certain mouths at Wolves.

Most recently about this 16 year old "starlet" from Rochdale.

How many Robbie Keanes have we seen rise to great heights over the years...?

Plus the fact the ones that have, seem to have risen at other clubs. Andres Gray is just one that I can bring to mind. There are more I am sure, but at 80 years my mind isn't it used to be memory wise.