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Allardyce envies confident Wolves
Published : 11 Sep 2009 13:10:49
Mick McCarthy's newly-promoted team have made steady progress in their opening sequence of Premier League fixtures, bouncing back from a home defeat against West Ham on the first day of the season to claim victory at Wigan and a further point against Hull. Blackburn, on the other hand, find themselves in the relegation zone after suffering defeats against Manchester City and Sunderland in their opening two games before being held to a goalless draw at home by West Ham. It makes Saturday's encounter a must-win game for Allardyce's team, and the manager is wary of the momentum Wolves are building on the back of their Championship-winning campaign last year. "Getting your first victory is very important, but if you are getting it away from home at Wigan, it gives you great confidence," Allardyce said. "Then they got a draw against Hull City, so I think they've had a reasonably good start. "They have suffered with a couple of injuries as well, as we all seem to do more often than ever before in the Premier League. "But I think Mick will be reasonably happy with his start - certainly I'd like it, compared to ours in terms of points." He continued: "They have got some enthusiastic players who have been riding high from an excellent season the season before, and they are going out in every game looking forward to playing in the Premier League. "Some haven't played (there) at all, so they are looking forward to the experience and they go out and give their all as individuals and as a team. "The team spirit is very good and they function as a team very well because they have all been together in that year when they had some great success. "That can carry them forward in the early part of the season a long, long way. I think that enthusiasm and team spirit throughout the side that Mick has got will stand them in good stead." Despite only registering a single point and goal in the league so far, Allardyce has been encouraged by his team's performances and believes that the elusive win is not far away. "If we carry on performing the way that we have been in all the three games, then the victory is just around the corner, the victory that we already very much deserve," he said. "I think we could have very easily won two and drawn one with the amount of opportunities we have had in all three games. "But in the main, our shooting boots have not been on the right feet at the right time and we have not put the ball in the back of the net as often as we should. "That has contributed more than anything else to us not getting those first three points." Clearly goalscoring has been an issue for a squad that lost Paraguayan striker Roque Santa Cruz to Manchester City in the summer. Allardyce admits that he may no longer have a forward at his disposal capable of netting 20 goals in a season and is looking for an increased strike rate throughout the team to compensate. "If we don't have that, then it's about everybody sharing the responsibility and we said that before the start of the season," Allardyce said. "We need an extra amount of goals from last season but it only means adding to the total of most players by one goal. "So if you haven't scored one, score one. If you scored two, score three. If you scored nine score 10. "If you add that through the side, that will be a total of maybe another 12 goals. It is an 11-man game and I use three substitutes nearly every match. "So if we all add the one goal on to the tally then we will get more points. It's not a big ask, but we have got to start doing it, and we have to start doing it on Saturday."