Adama Traore’s late strike saw Tottenham stunned by Wolves in the Premier League on Saturday, as the north London side slipped to a 1-0 defeat at Molineux.
The Spain international netted in the 82nd minute, crashing his finish in off the crossbar after Fraser Forster had parried Raul Jimenez’s shot towards him.
Traore’s goal condemned the visitors to back-to-back defeats under temporary boss Cristian Stellini, after their shock FA Cup exit to Sheffield United on Wednesday.
But while Antonio Conte will return to a side in disarray, opposite number Julen Lopetegui will delight in a big result that provides a major boost to his team’s top-flight survival bid.
THREE BIG POINTS AT MOLINEUX!
— Wolves (@Wolves) March 4, 2023
Stung by their midweek misfire, Spurs roared out of the gates with Dejan Kulusevski, Pedro Porro and Son Heung-min all crafting chances inside five minutes.
Wolves offered few answers in response, and an injury to Diego Costa, who had to be carried off after landing awkwardly on his leg following a challenge, did not help matters.
The prolonged pause did little to deter Tottenham though, going close when Porro hit the crossbar with a free-kick in first-half stoppage time.
Son rattled the woodwork two minutes after the break too, but the hosts soon grew bolder.
Jimenez forced a save from Forster with a diving header, while Ruben Neves went close with back-to-back opportunities in the 69th minute.
That inability to shut down their hosts ultimately cost Spurs in the end.
Traore was able to pick off Forster’s save and send the home crowd into a state of euphoria as they took a massive step towards securing survival.
What does it mean? Spurs stunned once more
Not only did the midweek defeat in the FA Cup end their only realistic hope of silverware for another season, Tottenham’s latest loss puts their top-four credentials in jeopardy too.
They have just a four-point cushion on Newcastle United, who have two games in hand to play. Defeat for Spurs here takes destiny out of their own hands for the moment.
Kane misfires on starting return
Rested initially at Bramall Lane before a late introduction failed to yield results, the England captain was back in the line-up at Molineux.
Despite registering three shots, he failed to land a single one on target, contributing to another barren performance from what is, on paper, one of the best attacks in the Premier League.
Traore seizes his moment
Conversely, it was a substitute who made the difference for Wolves, with the oft-maligned Traore coming off the bench to grasp his opportunity.
With his only attempt of the game, he scored his first league goal since a 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace in October, to pull off one of Wolves’ most important results of the season.
Spurs must refocus to face Milan in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Wednesday, while Wolves travel to Newcastle a week on Sunday.
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