Rob Edwards: Wolves' youngsters can take heart from Scunthorpe United draw
Rob Edwards insists his under-21s side can take ‘heart’ from their goalless draw against League One outfit Scunthorpe United in the Checkatrade Trophy.
Wolves went on to lose the resulting penalty shootout 4-2 on Tuesday night meaning they missed out on a bonus point from their first group game of the competition.
But Edwards was ‘really pleased’ with Wolves’ performance and believes the competition provides the players with a real insight into league football.
The 35-year-old said: “This competition is set up more for under-21 teams to give us a challenge and offer us something different.
“That is why it is important we get these fixtures when we can and make the most of them because it does give the lads a real insight into what is expected in league football.
“Scunthorpe have got some really good players, real high quality. I thought the pitch was excellent, we played really well, so again it was a real tough test for the lads. We can take heart from that performance.”
Both sides had chances to score during the 90 minutes, while Wolves goalkeeper Will Norris was called into action in the closing stages to tip a header over the bar.
Niall Ennis and Max Kilman scored from the spot in the shootout, but Pedro Goncalves missed and new-signing Sadou Diallo saw his effort saved by former Wolves shot-stopper Jon Flatt, resulting in Scunthorpe’s victory.
Despite failing to score during the game, Edwards praised his side for creating good chances on goal.
“We got into some great areas and just that final little bit let us down,” he said. “But in getting to those final areas I was really pleased.
“Whether it was with controlled possession or a counter-attack, we did get into some good areas throughout the game.
“I was delighted with our players. I thought with and without the ball we were really effective and possibly edged it in the 90 odd minutes so we are really pleased. Towards the end Will made a couple of important saves – saves I would expect him to make though.
“I thought he was excellent on the night, really calm, really reassuring as well, I think for the back three especially.
“I said to the players inside it just shows now how tough it is at this level just getting the ball over the line.
“Another night and possibly in some of the under-23 games we would have possibly scored
“I think we can feel unfortunate we didn’t take all three points.”
Wolves Under-21s’ next game in Group H is against Mansfield Town on October 9 before they face Lincoln City in their final group test.