Click crest to navigate

Quick links   Home Diary Links Contents Fixtures E-mail Terrace Banter

Bradford survive

Pre-season tour
Gallen signs
Hornets sting Town
Owls shot down
Gray returns
Wijnhard crashes out
Worthington woe
Ayre departs
First home point
Bye Bye Brucie
New manager announced
Fans show anger
9 points to safety
First home win
Ndlovu at first sight
Town leap to safety
Macari wins award
More cup woe
Ndlovu joins Blades
Jamie jumps ship
Town hit rock bottom again
Morris' McApline move
Prodigal son returns
Biggest win
QPR doomed
Nearly there
The bitter end

Saturday 9th December.

What an inspired signing Peter Ndlovu looks to be, 2 goals on his debut and he could have had at least one more. He gave the Town attack an extra dimension they have lacked for so long – speed and control.

The team was almost identical to the one fielded against Crewe last week except that Ben Thornley was the player to make way for Peter Ndlovu to play alongside Martin Smith and Kevin Gallen in a three pronged attack. Well, that was the theory but the injury jinx struck again after just 4 minutes with Martin Smith limping off with presumably another hamstring injury to be replaced by Ben Thornley.

Similar to last week’s game it was definitely one of two halves (aren’t they all?), with the first 45 minutes being pretty poor fare for the disappointing crowd of 11½ thousand who turned up. Maybe it was the early departure of Martin Smith but Town looked decidedly reluctant to break forward in great numbers, possibly looking to snuff out the visitor’s threat, which they did after around 20 minutes or so. George Ndah had a glorious chance when he broke through and with only the advancing Nico Vaesen to beat he shot straight at Town’s number 1 who parried the ball away to safety.

After this, the half degenerated into a very cagey contest with both sides seemingly content to keep a clean sheet and the half time whistle came as a welcome relief to break the tedium. My reaction at the interval was that Peter Ndlovu was not the answer to our problems, but thankfully he proved me to be very very wrong in the second half.

Once again the Macari/Jordan team talk had the right effect (listen up Bruce) and Town came out like a train in the second half. Just 4 minutes after the restart Town took the lead through a dreadful piece of defending and some calm finishing from our new acquisition. Paul Butler, Wolves’ on loan left back was unbelievably casual with a back pass from the edge of his own area and the lightening quick Ndlovu nipped in to intercept the ball. He still had to beat Wolves keeper and it seemed to take an eternity as he dummied Michael Oakes before smashing the ball high into the unguarded net. The goal brought the house down as it was so refreshing to see some composure in front of goal when faced with a one on one.

Following the goal Town were rampant and made Wolves look decidedly second best, Ndlovu chased everything putting the fear of God up the Wolves defence who didn’t know how to cope with him. Soon after the goal he seemed to be impeded in the area and although 10,000 people thought it was a penalty, the one that mattered didn’t – referee Paul Danson. The Wolves defenders looked shell shocked at Ndlovu's pace and nearly made the same mistake again just after the hour mark when poor defending again let in Ndlovu for another one on one, but this time he dallied a little too long and the chance was snuffed out.

For all our dominance we were still only leading 1-0, which is always, precarious especially when you’re bottom of the table and Macari brought Facey on for Gallen after 78 minutes. In typically Delroy fashion he chased the ball like his life depended on it and the visitors defence began to look even more unsettled. The game looked to be heading for a nervy climax as it neared its conclusion when Facey doubled the lead with a sublime piece of finishing 3 minutes from time. Chris Holland on the edge of the box flicked a ball through to the unmarked Delroy Facey who without hesitation calmly volleyed the ball into the back of the net. This was not a regulation volley from the top of his boot, it was side footed in with incredible accuracy and control. He has always been a crowd favourite and this goal did his popularity no harm whatsoever and confirmed that he deserves a starting place. It’s been a while since we have seen two players of genuine pace up front for Town and it showed how defenders hate playing against mobile attackers.

Even though the game was near it’s close, Town continued to surge forward in search of a third goal and Ben Thornley was unlucky to see a super shot beaten away by the Wolves keeper. Then some more dodgy defending sent the home faithful home with smiles on their faces. Under pressure from Delroy Facey, Wolves defender Lescott lost possession and the ball broke to Peter Ndlovu again who for a second time dummied Michael Oakes leaving him with the simple task of rolling the ball into the unguarded net. This was unbelievable stuff and when the final whistle sounded shortly afterwards the roof almost came off the stands with the cheering, more through a sense of relief but also with a sense that perhaps a second great escape might just be getting underway.

The result against Crewe was badly needed, but this result against Wolves showed that the self-belief was returning to the side along with a much more workmanlike and grafting performance, which is what it takes to climb out of the lower reaches of the table. There are three horrible away fixtures to follow at Nottingham Forest, Portsmouth and Watford before our next home fixture against Tranmere. There is still a hell of a long way to go, but if we can pick up a few points from these three games them reports of our demise might yet be a tad premature.

TOWN 3 (Ndlovu 49 & 90, Facey 87)

Wolverhampton Wanderers 0

Position in table – 24th

Town – Vaesen; Jenkins (Vincent 73); Heary; Armstrong; Gray; Baldry; Holland; Irons; Gallen (Facey 78); Smith (Thornley 4); Ndlovu. Subs not used – Margetson; Gorré.

Wolverhampton Wanderers – Oakes; Muscat; Naylor; Robinson; Pollett; Bazely (Lescott 76); Osborn (Al Jaber 69); Branch (Taylor 60); Ndah; Dinning; Butler. Subs not used – Camara; Nash.

Referee – Paul Danson (Leicester). Attendance 11,506



All words and thoughts by Chris except where stated.

A big thank you to Machala for putting up with me doing this and Ian for his support and my Mum for her proof reading.

If you enjoyed this site ... send me a message

If not - tell me