In his own words: Steve Parkin post-Cardiff City

Second half goals from Gary Madine and Josh Vela earned Wanderers three priceless points against second-placed Cardiff City on Saturday afternoon.

Madine drew first blood with a penalty kick 15 minutes from time, with Vela adding a second inside the closing stages of the clash to make sure of the result for the Trotters.

And reflecting on the game after the final whistle, assistant manager Steve Parkin covered the following points...

On picking up a much-needed victory...

It was an enjoyable game and one which was very competitive between two good teams, battling it out head-to-head.

Ultimately, big moments for ourselves won us the game and it was a great penalty at a really pressurised time which swung it in our favour.

It takes real bottle to step up and put the ball in the net, but the whole commitment shown by the team was top class against a very dangerous Cardiff team.

We’re delighted with the result though and also the clean sheet.

On the result being the perfect response after last weekend’s defeat to Burton…

We were as disappointed as anybody after last Saturday’s game – the fans and people at the club were upset, but us as management and players are twice as upset as we can influence the result.

The lads have responded really well in training this week though as they knew that today was a big game and they performed very, very well.

Points are so hard to come by in this division – every game throws up a different problem or challenge in terms of strength of the squad, power and pace in the division.

It is a really tough league to compete in, but we’ve come a long way in the past five or six weeks and we’ve got a great group of lads who are working hard for each other and together as a unit.

The most pleasing thing for myself and Phil Parkinson however is the concentration of the players and they were 100% at it today which you need to be against Neil Warnock sides.

On Gary Madine’s performance…

Gaz really stepped up today, especially in the second half having been tagged by their boys in the first.

It was a tough game for him personally, but he really came to the fore and was a real handful for Cardiff, alongside taking his penalty very well.

On Josh Vela getting his first goal of the campaign…

We’re delighted for Josh – he’s worked very hard this season having been out with his injury for a fairly long time.

He’s snatched at a few recently and maybe should have had a goal at Nottingham Forest the other week, but we’ve told him to just keep going and getting into those positions in the box.

We knew his chance would come and with him being a great finisher in training, we knew that he’d take it when it arrived.

On getting a win and a clean sheet ahead of a busy festive period…

Getting the clean sheet is key for myself – they have been few and far between and you have to work very hard to get them in this division, so to get one is extremely pleasing.

And finally, on the challenge of Middlesbrough on Boxing Day…

They’re probably one of the strongest squads in the division and when they came here earlier in the season, we did okay until later in the game when they scored a couple.

We just have to go up there, be resolute and get our away form up and running.

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