Sunday, April 21, 2024

Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-2 Manchester City: Wolves recover from two-down on dramatic evening

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Manchester City’s title challenge took another significant blow on Friday as Wolverhampton Wanderers came from two-nil down to beat the ten-man champions on a drama-filled night at Molineux.

Pep Guardiola’s men were reduced to ten men within the opening 15 minutes as Ederson’s foul on Diogo Jota earned him a red card. VAR then got involved as the champions took the lead via a penalty. Raheem Sterling initially had his effort saved but a retake was suggested, with the forward once again missing before tucking in the rebound.

The Englishman was on the scoresheet shortly after half-time as he chipped Wolves keeper Rui Patricio from close range after being played through. Adama Traore reduced the deficit just before the hour with a great low strike to haul the hosts back into the clash. The Spanish wideman was then key in the Wolves equaliser as he stole the ball from Benjamin Mendy and put it on a plate for Raul Jimenez to score. There was just enough time left at the end of the game for Matt Doherty to slot home an uber-dramatic winner and all-but end Manchester City’s title challenge.

Red mist descends for Ederson

With Liverpool winning at Leicester on Wednesday evening, the pressure was on the champions to earn a result. The pressure appeared to get to them, and specifically Ederson as Jota picked up Conor Coady’s lofted ball and raced through beyond the City defence. The Brazilian though intervened and hauled down the Portuguese just outside of the area, earning himself a red card in the process.

Wolves then had their own decision go against them as Mahrez was seemingly trodden on by Leander Dendoncker in the penalty area. Despite the referee not originally giving the decision, VAR intervened and gave the spot-kick. Sterling at first had his effort saved before the spot-kick was then retaken due to encroachment. The drama was not finished there though as Patricio again saved but the ball fell kindly for Sterling and he tucked home with the goal unguarded.

City get their second

With a man advantage, Wolves really should have pushed for an equaliser during the remainder of the first-half but real chances failed to materialise. Joao Moutinho was the only one to test substitute stopper Claudio Bravo, forcing the Chilean into a relatively comfortable stop. Jota did have a chance after the break but lifted the ball over the crossbar after exchanging passes with Raul Jimenez.

It was the visitors who were to go two goals up however. A great team move saw Kevin De Bruyne release Sterling in-behind the Wolves defence, who stayed cool to sit Patricio down with a delectable dink into the net.

Lifeline for Wolves?

Following two shouts for a penalty, Nuno Espirito Santo’s men did eventually get their goal. Traore, who had previously scored twice at the Etihad earlier this season, drove straight at the Manchester City backline and zipped a low shot into the bottom corner via the upright.

There were a couple of chances for Wolves to equalise late in the day from free-kicks. Firstly, Romain Saiss saw his flicked header drop just wide of the far post before Matt Doherty was not quite able to get enough contact on an effort of his own.

Wolves snatch it late at the death

For all of their effort and drive, it was a huge mistake that saw Wolves equalise. A sloppy error from Benjamin Mendy allowed Traore to nick the ball and square it to Jimenez who had the simple task of side-footing the ball underneath Bravo.

Their comeback was sealed in the 90th minute of the game with a fine individual goal from Matt Doherty. Exchanging passes with Traore, the full-back skipped inside and then sent a clinical low effort beyond the grasp of Bravo to seal a dramatic and memorable victory for Wolverhampton Wanderers despite Sterling slamming a free-kick onto the crossbar in the final seconds.

Final Thoughts

What a stunning comeback from Wolverhampton Wanderers. In honesty, they were unfortunate to be two goals behind the champions and showed tremendous mental strength to haul themselves level, eventually claiming a deserved victory. Adama Traore was once again at the heart of the action and put in a man-of-the-match showing.

Match Report

Wolverhampton Wanderers: Patricio (7); Saiss (7), Coady (7), Dendoncker (6); Jonny (6) (Vinagre (6), 73′), Moutinho (7), Neves (7), Doherty (7); Jota (7) (Neto (N/A), 79′), Traore (8), Jimenez (7) (Bennett (N/A), 90+4′).

Manchester City: Ederson (4); Mendy (5), Otamendi (5), Fernandinho (5), Walker (6); B. Silva (6), Rodri (6), De Bruyne (7) (Gundogan (5), 67′); Sterling (7), Mahrez (6) (Garcia (5), 46′), Aguero (N/A) (Bravo (5), 14′).

Goals: Sterling (PEN 25′, 50′), Traore (55′), Jimenez (82′), Doherty (89′)

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Yellow Cards: Otamendi (60′)

Red Cards: Ederson (12′)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Daniel Orme


Daniel is a football journalism graduate from the University of Derby. He has been freelance writing for approximately six years now and brings considerable experience. A season ticket holder at local club Leicester City, he witnessed the Foxes miraculously lifting the Premier League trophy in the 2015/16 campaign.

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