|WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS 2 (0)||TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 1 (1)|
|Date : – Saturday 11th November 2023||Kick off : – 12.30|
|Competition : – Premier League||Venue : – Molineux|
|Crowd : – ?????|
|Referee : – Tim Robinson (Sussex)||Linesmen : – Mr. Timothy Wood; Mr. Wade Smith|
|Fourth official : – Thomas Bramall|
|VAR official : – Paul Tierney||VAR Assistant : – Sian Massey-Ellis|
|Weather : – Chilly, sunny, dry|
|Wolves kicked off the first half attacking the Stan Cullis Stand end|
|Playing time : – 90 + 15 minutes
|WOLVERHANPTON WANDERERS||TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR|
|Sarabia 89m 59s||Johnson 02m 15s|
|Lemina 90+6 m 37s|
|Dawson (foul on Son) 90+6|| Royal (foul on Semedo) 45
|Doherty (dissent) 90+6||Bissouma (foul on Lemina) 40+2|
|Gomes (excessive celebration) 90+8||Bentancur (foul on Hwang) 89|
|Ait-Nouri (excessive celebration) 90+8|
|WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS||TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR|
|1.||Jose SA||13.||Guglielmo VICARIO|
|15.||Craig DAWSON||15.||Eric DIER|
|23.||Max KILMAN (c)||33.||Ben DAVIES|
|3.|| Rayan AIT-NOURI ( 20. Tommy DOYLE 87)
|8.||Joao GOMES ( 21. Pablo SARABIA 87 )||5.||Pierre-Emile HOJBJERG|
|5.||Mario LEMINA||8.||Yves BISSOUMA ( 18. Giovani Lo CELSO 76)|
|27.||Jean-Ricner BELLEGARDE ( 18. Sasa KALAJDZIC 73)||29.||Pape Matar SARR ( 30. Rodrigo BENTANCUR 63 )|
|22.||Nelson SEMEDO ( 2. Matt DOHERTY 67 )|
|12.||Matheus CUNHA||7.||Heung-Min SON (c)|
|11.||HWANG Hee-Chan||22.||Brennan JOHNSON ( 11. Bryan GIL 75)|
|25.||Daniel BENTLEY||20.||Fraser FORSTER|
|17.||Hugo BUENO||35.||Ashley PHILLIPS|
|6.||Boubacar TRAORE||65.||Alfie DORRINGTON|
|19.||Jonny OTTO||4.||Oliver SKIPP|
|9.||Fabio SILVA||36.||Alejo VELIZ|
|63.|| Alejo VELIZ
= Assist = Goal scored = Own goal scored
|Manager : – Gary O’Neil||Manager : – Ange Postecoglou|
|Kit Supplier : – Castore||Kit Supplier : – Nike|
|Shirt Sponsor : – AstroPay||Shirt Sponsor : – AIA
|Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – 6686 Sports||Shirt Sleeve Sponsor : – cinch
|Colours : –
||Colours : –|
|Images of kits courtesy of the marvellous Colours of Football website|
|A patched up Spurs side went to Molineux and despite taking an early lead could not hold on as Wolves scored two injury time goals to take the three points. Having lost four players from Monday night’s game against Chelsea with suspension and injury, Ben Davies returned from injury to take his place in the middle of a back four and Eric Dier came in for his first start of the season, while Emerson Royal started at left back in Destiny Udogie’s place and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg filled in in midfield, pushing Pape Matar Sarr forward in James Maddison’s position.
The game started in bright sunshine, albeit chilly and Spurs looked comfortable in possession, with Brennan Johnson starting a move on the left, knocking the ball back to Pape Matar Sarr, whose long ball across the pitch 25 yards out was dummied by Pedro Porro. That allowed Dejan Kulusevski to take the ball into the box and drag it back behind his standing leg to Porro, who had gone on the overlap and played a precise low ball across the face of goal, where Johnson had come in, beating Semedo to the ball to knock it in from close range for his first goal for the club. It was the sort of move that Spurs have created a lot this season and it is usually Son who is on the end of it, but Brennan got this one to hand Spurs an early lead inside the third minute.
There was a lot of midfield possession without breaking the lines, but Ait-Nouri got forward, with Ben Davies coming across from the left to block his shot. Royal did well to challenge in the air in the middle of the box after Bellegarde got a dangerous cross in from the Wolves left and Hojbjerg was out quickly as play progressed to win the ball off Lemina, who stayed down injured and for a minute, my mind went back to Monday and wondered if this was going to be another unwanted VAR moment, but after treatment, play moved on.
Wolves almost got away after Porro was off the pitch having had his boot stripped off him by a naughty tackle by Gomes, but the move broke down with a loose pass and then Davies did well to track Hwang when he tried to break past the last man. The one-eyed Wolves fans were booing Porro whenever they could after that incident, but the biggest problem for Spurs was we were not retaining possession as well as previously this season and the referee was failing to punish a few tackles from behind that the Wolves players were committing with frequent regularity.
It took until nearly 30 minutes into the half until we got back into the Wolves area, with Johnson’s low cross being cut out by Sa before it reached Son. With the players available, Tottenham weren’t employing a full press and that allowed the home side to play the ball out. A long ball out to the right was moved to Lemina, who drove low across goal bringing a low stop to his right by Vicario at the cost of a corner. This one went long, whereas the previous ones had hit the first Spurs man, but the Wolves possession as growing as the Spurs full-backs tucked in, giving the home team space in the wide wing positions.
Between Porro and Johnson, they were giving the Molineux crowd a quandary about who to boo first. Some of that turned toward the referee who had the temerity to give free-kicks against their side. They cheered loudly when Royal slid in on Semedo and brought him down a couple of yards outside the box, being shown a yellow card in the process. The free-kick was pulled back and Spurs blocked it for a corner that was hit deep and Lemina won a header that the referee claimed came off Davies last for another one. TV showed that it didn’t even though the ref in a good position to see it too. A foul on Bellegarde brought another free-kick that Toti won in the air, but Vicario was quickly across to. Another free-kick for Wolves for a foul on Lemina saw the referee book Bissouma, who will now serve a suspension, but it was nothing more than the Wolves players had been doing earlier in the match, so why weren’t they booked you might ask.
Five minutes after half-time, Dawson threw two hands into Son’s face, but the referee didn’t think it was a foul and then they broke away, only stopped by a very good tackle by Dier on Cunha in the Tottenham area. Before that Bellegarde shot over from just outside the box and after it, Cunha over from inside the area, with the pressure building, although Hwang had a good chance when the ball dropped for him just to the right of the goal eight yards out, but he shanked it wide. From the goal-kick, Spurs worked it around the Old Gold shirts, with Dier sending Kulusevski away down the right wing, but he opted to cut inside for a shot with three Spurs players up in the attack, who might have been better placed.
Just after the hour, Rodrigo Bentancur replaced Sarr and as Wolves looked for a pass into the box, it spun up into the air and Dier did well to track the flight of the ball to beat Cunha to it. Wolves brought on Matt Doherty for Semedo and he got a good hand from the Tottenham fans and it came just before Son chased down a long ball to keep it in and a corner was won as it was moved across the pitch. Spurs kept the ball at the Wolves end for a while, which hadn’t happened for a while, but when the home team broke, they got a free-kick for a tackle that he had let go throughout the match. He gave another one against Kulusevski when Toti slipped over under pressure.
We broke well, with Son playing Hojberg free on the right wing and he looked for an early ball behind the Wolves defence for Johnson. Brennan took it first time, curling it wide and went down holding his leg, but it appeared only to be cramp, which might have hampered his shot. It led to him being substituted along with Bissouma, as Bryan Gil and Giovani Lo Celso came off the bench for the last 15 minutes of normal time. Wolves had brought on Sasa Kalajdzic who is a towering forward, indicating how they might approach the remainder of the game.
Davies was in the right place when Lemina was freed in the left side of the box and pulled the ball across the six yard box with Doherty coming in, but Ben got to it first to stop the ball reaching the former Spurs man. Royal made a good interception too when a break down the left looked to find two Wolves players in the middle, but the Brazilian cleared it out for a corner. From the second phase after the corner was cleared, a ball in picked out
As Wolves pushed forward, they lost the ball and Bentancur skipped past a couple of tackles before playing it left to Son and although his shot was blocked, the ball was worked back to Lo Celso, whose rising drive was tipped over the bar by Sa. The corner was cleared and Bentancur was booked for barging Hwang over, adding another to our tally of yellow cards while Wolves trailed a long way behind thanks to lenient officiating.
As the clock showed 90 minutes, Sarabia got onto a dinked ball into the box by Cunha to take a touch and then powered a volley past Vicario from the left hand corner of the six yard box to make it 1-1. For all the chances they had made, this was probably the most difficult.
Spurs were defending well but when Royal was fouled, Hojbjerg too the free-kick quickly and passed it straight to a Wolves player. We survived that and the referee only saw it as a booking when Dawson wrestled Son to the floor and then stepped into his groin. Where was VAR when you needed it ? The referee was starting to lose it big time as the fourth bad foul on Lo Celso escaped without a card, but he did dish one out to Doherty for dissent.
Then in the seventh minute of added time a quick free-kick sent Sarabia down the right and his ball into the middle played Lemina in to slid the ball
It was like Sheffield United in reverse, with the only thing you could say was that we didn’t push home the advantage we had early in the match. While Wolves were getting stuck in and getting away with it, we were lacking the aggression to make them hurry their game and when they did hurry it, for the winner, we weren’t well placed to stop it. Hojbjerg stopped his run tracking Lemina, who timed it right to meet the cross and scuff it past Vicario to take all the points. If that had been kept out we would still have been third, but on equal points with Mancashter City and Woolwich, with a couple of tough games to come with key players going to be missing.
|Mancashter United||1||Luton Town||0|
|AFC Bournemouth||2||Newcash United||0|
|Brighton & Hove Albion||1||Sheffield United||1|
|West Ham United London||3||Nottingham Forest||2|
Premier League Table 2022-23
|8||Brighton & Hove Albion||12||5||4||3||25||21||19||+4|
|9||West Ham United London||12||5||2||5||21||22||14||-1|