Belfast Telegraph

Friday 11 July 2014

Odemwingie keen to kick on

Peter Odemwingie

West Brom striker Peter Odemwingie has vowed to put his recent troubles with club and country behind him after becoming a derby hero on Sunday.

Odemwingie came in for criticism from fans after Nigeria's recent failure to qualify for the African Nations Cup. Albion head coach Roy Hodgson then left him out of the starting line-up for Sunday game against Wolves at The Hawthorns, but Odemwingie came off the bench and scored a superb second goal in the Baggies' 2-0 win.

Odemwingie said: "I worry about the team a lot and he (Hodgson) has noticed that I am a sensitive person. I do worry about the team and my performance. I had to take in stuff that I didn't really like to hear this week from here and there. But this situation has also taught me that sometimes you have to let things pass, just concentrate on your work and keep going."

Odemwingie, Albion's top scorer with 15 goals last season, is hoping the derby win will kickstart his and the club's season.

He said: "I could feel the importance of this game from the first day I arrived back from the national team, with the way the fans were talking about it. I knew it was a big game so when I scored the goal I felt double joy.

"We climbed up the table and it was an important three points and to get the first home victory of the season is great. Now we all want to kick on from here.

"With the goal I didn't have time to think. It was like a training situation. I saw the goal and just relied on my instincts. I'm glad it went in and we climbed up the table and I scored my goal, so everything is good."

Wolves, in contrast, slipped further towards the relegation zone after a fifth successive defeat - their worst top-flight sequence for 27 years. Striker Kevin Doyle admitted next weekend's home clash with Swansea now falls into the 'must-win' bracket.

He said: "You lose two games, three games, four games. When it is five games, it is a nightmare. We probably deservedly got beat, to be honest. We had two chances in the game really. Other than that we huffed and puffed but didn't really look like scoring.

"It is not ideal. We will have to play Swansea at home next week and win that one and that is the only way you can look at it."