2018-19 Season - March - May 2019

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38 A Sunday 12 May 15:00  Liverpool

28 Liverpool 2 Mané (17', 81') Wolves 0 FT Wolves finish 7th P38 W16 L13 D9 GF47 GA46 Diff +1 pos 7th Points 57

HT 1-0

Liverpool's bid for a first Premier League title and a first top-flight triumph in 29 years ended in failure despite a final-day victory over Wolves. In the 'as it stands' table, the Reds were top for 21 first-half minutes, only for Manchester City to recover from falling behind at Brighton to record a convincing 4-1 victory. Sadio Mane scored from close range after 17 minutes and again after 81 to join Liverpool team-mate Mohamed Salah and Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as the Premier League's top scorer on 22 goals. Liverpool keeper Alisson was confirmed as the Golden Glove winner with 21 clean sheets. The victory was Liverpool's ninth in a row and their 30th overall in the league. They finished on 97 points, the third-highest top-flight total in English football history - behind City's title triumphs this season (98) and last season (100) pic E&S.

Confusion in the crowds, controlled on the pitch

In his programme notes, Klopp pointed out "the job for all of us today is to make sure the focus stays here, on this game". Quite rightly, he pointed out, it was the only thing Liverpool had any control over.  To their absolute credit, Klopp and his players followed the plea completely. In the stands though, it was chaos. From kick-off, the volume was turned up a notch or two, the backing from the supporters to players hugely impressive, so much so that when Sadio Mane tapped home from six yards there was no noticeable change. Who knows how these things get started but cheers were heard for a Brighton goal that hadn't actually been scored. Fans all over were desperately trying to find out what was going on. Anyone who has tried to get a signal at any major sporting event knows that is not straightforward.  Phones were refreshed and refreshed. The noise subsided. Nothing had happened. Then it did. The celebration at Brighton's goal was more feverish than had been the case for Mane's. The sadness was that it was brought to an end quite so quickly. For 10 more minutes, (LFC). were still top. There was another ghost goal, another celebration. This time more muted. The optimism from before was disappearing. The belief starting to fade.  News City had gone in front came via the Wolves supporters, who taunted their hosts by telling them they would win nothing this season.

By the time Martin Atkinson blew his whistle for half-time, Matt Doherty had hit the bar for the visitors and the home fans had found their voice again. Anfield echoed to the strains of "Liverpool we love you". And now for Europe It did not feel like the league title was on the line in the second half. Wolves, as they have done so often against the big six this season, gave ample evidence to show they are a very good team. Next season they may go beyond their seventh-placed finish, their best since 1980, with astute recruitment in the summer. As the goals went in on the south coast, Diogo Jota brought a good save from Alisson with his close-range header before Mane converted Trent Alexander-Arnold's cross nine minutes from time.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain made only his second appearance of the season as a late substitute before the whistle blew on Liverpool's amazing domestic campaign. Wolves will qualify for next season's Europa League if Manchester City complete the first ever domestic treble against Watford in the FA Cup final at Wembley next Saturday. Liverpool will aim for their sixth European title when they play Tottenham in the Champions League final in Madrid on 1 June.


Man of the match - Sadio Mane (LFC) Quality finishing from Mane gave the Senegal forward a share of the Golden Boot, including 18 goals scored at Anfield

'We could not shake City off' - what the managers said Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, speaking to Sky Sports: "I know people will find something and say a point here or three. We had lucky moments, City had lucky moments - against Burnley and us. But we scored a strange goal against Everton and a late one against Newcastle. It's not about outplaying everyone, it's about keeping believing and staying in the race. City found it difficult to get rid of us, and we couldn't get rid of them. "Being second in the Premier League isn't what we wanted tonight but we'll take it. This is a first step, that's how we see it. The team who played the last couple of weeks were together last year apart from Alisson. We were 25 points off last season. If we do those same steps again that will be a season. "I do my job. The boys deserve it 100%. Congratulations to Manchester City, they played a good season. They took 198 points in two seasons, not bad."


Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo: "We had a good game against a fantastic opponent. We started not so good but we had good chances.It's the end of the season. Until the last minute we showed total commitment and that's what I went. We had chances but weren't clinical. We knew we would be facing a tough opponent. The commitment, belief and ideas were there. We will try to improve and build a good team next season."


What have you got to do to win the title? The stats you may have missed - Liverpool became the first team in top-flight history to win as many as 30 games and 97 points in a season and not win the title. No side has ever previously lost just one game in a top-flight season and not won the title - the previous record was also held by Liverpool in the 2008-09 season (two defeats, finished second). Liverpool's tally of 97 points would have been enough to win the Premier League in all but one of the previous 26 seasons of the competition (2017-18).

Wolves have ended the season in seventh position - the highest by a newly promoted side in the Premier League since Ipswich Town finished fifth in 2000-01.

Sadio Mane scored 18 home Premier League goals for Liverpool in 2018-19 - the most by any player, and eight more than Huddersfield Town scored in total in their home games this season. Trent Alexander-Arnold provided 12 assists for Liverpool in the Premier League this season - the most by a defender in a single campaign in the competition's history. Liverpool won 22 home matches at Anfield in all competitions this season, their most home wins in a season since 2000-01 (also 22).


Liverpool

13Alisson 66Alexander-Arnold 32Matip 4van Dijk 26Robertson sub for Gomezat 84' 14Henderson 3Fabinho 5Wijnaldum sub for Oxlade-Chamberlainat 88' 11Salah 27Origi sub for Milnerat 64' 10Mané Substitutes 6Lovren 7Milner 12Gomez 15Sturridge 21Oxlade-Chamberlain 22Mignolet 23Shaqiri

Wolves

11Rui Patrício 5BennettBooked at 49' 16Coady 15Boly 2Doherty sub for Traoréat 80' 32Dendoncker 8Neves 28João Moutinho sub for Gibbs-Whiteat 84' 19Castro Otto sub for Vinagreat 84'9Jiménez 18JotaBooked at 50' Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 21Ruddy 29Vinagre 37Traoré 49Kilman

Referee: Martin Atkinson Attendance: 53,331


       Liverpool Wolves

Possession 59%    41%

Shots      13      7

Shots on Tgt 5     2

Corners     4      1

Fouls       3     11

Match ends, (LFC). 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.

Full Time 90'+3' Second Half ends, (LFC). 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.

90'+1' Corner, (LFC).. Conceded by Raúl Jiménez. 90'+1' Sadio Mané (LFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 90'+1' Foul by Conor Coady (WW). 90' James Milner (LFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 90' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 88' Sub, (LFC).. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain replaces Georginio Wijnaldum. 88' Virgil van Dijk (LFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 88' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 87' Attempt saved. Mohamed Salah (LFC) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Sadio Mané. 84' Sub, (LFC).. Joseph Gomez replaces Andrew Robertson. 84' Sub, (WW). Rúben Vinagre replaces Jonny. 84' Sub, (WW). Morgan Gibbs-White replaces João Moutinho. 83' Virgil van Dijk (LFC) hits the bar with a header from the centre of the box. Assisted by Trent Alexander-Arnold with a cross following a corner. 83' Corner, (LFC).. Conceded by Conor Coady. Goal! 81' Goal! Liverpool 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. Sadio Mané (LFC) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Trent Alexander-Arnold with a cross. 81' Attempt blocked. Mohamed Salah (LFC) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 80' Sub, (WW). Adama Traoré replaces Matt Doherty. 79' Corner, (LFC).. Conceded by Conor Coady. 74' Attempt missed. Georginio Wijnaldum (LFC) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is too high. Assisted by Andrew Robertson. 73' Attempt blocked. Mohamed Salah (LFC) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Sadio Mané. 73' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez with a headed pass. 72' Offside, (LFC).. Jordan Henderson tries a through ball, but Mohamed Salah is caught offside. 69' Georginio Wijnaldum (LFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 69' Foul by Jonny (WW). 69' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Matt Doherty. 65' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Matt Doherty. 64' Sub, (LFC).. James Milner replaces Divock Origi. 63' Attempt missed. Divock Origi (LFC) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top left corner. 60' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Diogo Jota. 58' Foul by Fabinho (LFC). 58' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 54' Attempt blocked. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Matt Doherty. 52' Fabinho (LFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 52' Foul by Willy Boly (WW). Booking 50' Diogo Jota (WW) is shown the yellow card. 50' Fabinho (LFC) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 50' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 50' Joel Matip (LFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 50' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). Booking 49' Ryan Bennett (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 49' Sadio Mané (LFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 49' Foul by Ryan Bennett (WW). 48' Attempt missed. Trent Alexander-Arnold (LFC) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right from a direct free kick. 47' Mohamed Salah (LFC) wins a free kick on the right wing. 47' Foul by Willy Boly (WW).

Second Half Second Half begins Liverpool 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.

Half Time

45'+2' First Half ends, (LFC). 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.

45'+1' Georginio Wijnaldum (LFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 45'+1' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 44' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Joel Matip. 44' Matt Doherty (WW) hits the bar with a right footed shot from the centre of the box. Assisted by Diogo Jota. 43' Offside, (LFC).. Joel Matip tries a through ball, but Divock Origi is caught offside. 36' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Willy Boly with a headed pass. 34' Attempt missed. Mohamed Salah (LFC) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high following a corner. 33' Corner, (LFC).. Conceded by Ryan  Bennett. 29' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 27' Delay in match Diogo Jota (WW) because of an injury. 24' Attempt saved. Andrew Robertson (LFC) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Trent Alexander-Arnold. 20' Attempt blocked. Mohamed Salah (LFC) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Goal!  17' Goal! Liverpool 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. Sadio Mané (LFC) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. 14' Foul by Jordan Henderson (LFC). 14' Willy Boly (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 11' Foul by Fabinho (LFC). 11' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 10' Divock Origi (LFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 10' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 5' Offside, (LFC).. Joel Matip tries a through ball, but Divock Origi is caught  offside. 5' Offside, (WW). Ryan Bennett tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 4'Attempt saved. Divock Origi (LFC) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Joel Matip. Kick Off

First Half begins.


TEAM NEWS

Liverpool are bolstered by the likely return of Premier League top scorer Mohamed Salah from concussion. Jordan Henderson and Andy Robertson are expected to overcome respective knee and calf injuries sustained in midweek.  Roberto Firmino remains out with a groin problem but should be fit for the Champions League final.  Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has no fresh injury concerns and could name an unchanged side for the 15th time this season in the Premier League.

The 'week of big football moments' is not over yet - Klopp

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@Wilsonfooty: So it has come to this - nine months distilled to 90 minutes.  This Liverpool team's ethic was summed up perfectly by Mohammed Salah's choice of t-shirt as he joined the throng willing Liverpool to victory over Barcelona.  But can Anfield scatter its magic again? Can Brighton show the same resolve at the Amex against Manchester City? Logic suggests that, at the final whistle, the noise from Anfield will be of defiance and not delirium.

Nuno Espirito Santo's Wolves have already amassed more points than any other Premier League newcomer since 2001. They will finish the season in the top half of the top flight for only the second time in 45 seasons. They are not the opponent Liverpool would choose for such a denouement.

Now, let the games begin.


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp: "It was a week of miracles, of big football moments, and from our point of view if there could be a big football moment on the weekend, that would be nice. The week is not over yet. Sunday still counts, so we still go for it. Nothing changed, we knew it before. The only thing we can do is win the game."

Wolverhampton Wanderers head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "The players rise for every game and training session, this is the philosophy. It's a big game and we want to play it. I like Liverpool, the way they play with the intensity they have. It's hard to find someone who didn't enjoy the game against Barcelona. It was amazing.  "It's a tough challenge, it's the final game of the season and we want to compete like always."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

Wolves will give them a good game but I have seen enough of Liverpool recently to know that if they need a goal, they will get one. Jurgen Klopp's side have had an absolutely brilliant season and all they can do on Sunday is win. If they do that and finish second with 97 points then they cannot really do much more.

Prediction: 2-0


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

Liverpool have won the past four Premier League meetings, and only lost one of nine (W6, D2). This will be the sixth time Liverpool and Wolves have met in their final game of a top-flight season, with Liverpool winning the previous five by an aggregate score of 12-4. However, Wolves have won two of the three most recent encounters, both by a 2-1 scoreline in the FA Cup: at Anfield in 2017 and Molineux this January. They could win consecutive away fixtures against Liverpool for the first time since 1950.

Liverpool

The Reds have earned eight league wins in a row and are on the longest current unbeaten run in the top flight (W12, D4). They could remain unbeaten at home in consecutive top-flight seasons for the first time in 39 years. Victory on Sunday would equal the club top-flight record of 30 in a season, set over 42 matches in 1978-79. Liverpool have not lost their final home match of a campaign in 13 attempts since the famous 0-2 defeat in a title decider against Arsenal in 1989. Their tally of 18 headed goals in the Premier League this season is more than any other side. Jurgen Klopp's side have also scored an unrivalled 22 league goals from set-pieces, excluding penalties. Sadio Mane has scored 16 Premier League home goals in 2018-19, the most by any player. Liverpool are the first team in Premier League history to have two defenders each provide at least 10 assists in a season. Full-backs Trent Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson have set up 11 goals apiece (according to the Premier League).

Wolverhampton Wanderers

Wolves will end the season with the best league position and points total by a newly-promoted club since Ipswich came fifth with 66 points in 2000-01. They have accrued 16 points from 11 league games against the top-six sides, easily the best return among the 14 lower-ranked clubs. Wolves could become only the third side finishing lower than sixth to beat as many as five teams from that elite group in a Premier League season. Southampton did so in 1997-98, as did West Ham in 2015-16. They are vying to register four successive top-flight wins for the first time since December 1971 to January 1972.  Nuno Espirito Santo has named an unchanged starting XI in 14 Premier League games this season, a tally only matched by Burnley.


37 H Sat 4 May 15:00  Fulham     

37 Wolves 1 Dendoncker (75') Fulham 0

HT 0-0

Before the match Nuno was awarded a Doctorate in Sport by the University Of Wolverhampton.

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo says it would be "stupid" to think about European football despite his side moving a step closer to a seventh-placed Premier League finish and potentially a Europa League spot next season with victory over Fulham.  After a largely frustrating 75 minutes for the hosts at Molineux, Joao Moutinho played in Matt Doherty down the right for the defender to curl in a fine cross that Leander Dendoncker emphatically volleyed inside the near post. (Pic Getty) Wolves will be guaranteed to finish seventh in their first season after promotion if Leicester fail to beat Premier League leaders Manchester City on Monday. If Nuno's side do secure seventh and City subsequently beat Watford in the FA Cup final, then Wolves will land a Europa League place, returning to Europe after a 39-year wait.

"The FA Cup still has to be played, it would be stupid to think about Europe," said Nuno. "It's nothing to do with the table, it's the how - the how is much more important. It started two years ago and we will never forget where we came from."

Superb Wolves forward Diogo Jota went close four times, twice sliding wide and twice drawing fine saves from Fulham keeper Sergio Rico, while Dendoncker also hit the bar with a header. The already-relegated visitors should have taken the lead on 62 minutes but Aleksandar Mitrovic scooped his first-time effort over the bar after he was picked out in the middle by Ryan Sessegnon. Fulham midfielder Harvey Elliott became the youngest ever Premier League player at 16 years and 30 days by coming on in the 88th minute.

Wolves have oddly had problems against struggling sides this season, having lost six of their 11 previous matches against teams in the bottom six heading into that round of fixtures.  For long periods of this game, it looked like a compact but limited Fulham would add a goalless draw to that record but Wolves were determined not to let their last home game be a disappointment after a season of thrilling matches at Molinuex. Jota weaved his way past Fulham defenders all afternoon, picking up a yellow card for simulation early on, but more often drawing fouls and getting his team surging forward on the counter-attack. In the first half, a brilliant flick from Raul Jimenez led to Jota forcing Rico to palm it round corner, before he got past his man and slid wide across goal with his left foot. He similarly slipped a left-footed effort beyond the far post after the break and then saw a brilliant volley pushed onto the bar by Rico as the Portuguese ultimately failed to get the goal his performance deserved. Doherty then lashed a superb strike high into the net but was rightly called offside when Jonny's initial shot was deflected into his path. But Dendoncker finally broke through. Having seen his header from a corner rebound off the bar in the first half, the Belgium midfielder showed excellent technique to volley the ball from just behind his body and edge Wolves towards the highest finish for a promoted side since Ipswich came fifth in 2000-01.


Parker 'proud' of Fulham performance despite loss - Defeat ended a run of three successive victories for Fulham after their relegation was confirmed last month but there were again some promising signs from caretaker boss Scott Parker's side. They were comfortable in possession, albeit rarely incisive around Wolves' area, their defenders made some fine covering tackles and Rico impressed in goal, also denying Doherty's header at the near post and pushing away Ruben Neves' 25-yard drive. The visitors could even have had a club record fourth Premier League win in a row had Mitrovic not miscued his strike when free in the area after fine work from Sessegnon down the right, while Joe Bryan also drew a decent save from Rui Patricio. Ultimately this match just reinforced the gap between these two promoted sides, with Wolves plotting how they might even break into the top six and Fulham facing another tough task to return straight away from the Championship. And the Cottagers offered a brief nod to that future, bringing on Elliott, who beat the previous Premier League mark of former Fulham defender Matthew Briggs. Briggs was 16 years and 68 days when he played against Middlesbrough in May 2007.


Man of the match - Diogo Jota (Wolves) - Diogo Jota slalomed past numerous defenders, created chances and went close four times in an entertaining display

'An important win' - reaction Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo told BBC Sport: "This is an important win, it was important to the atmosphere at Molineux. Everyone expected us to win but it was difficult because we faced a tough team. But I'm really pleased with the way we finished the season at home, the fans have been fantastic this season. We had to be focused, organised and disciplined because Fulham had chances also, it was a tight game."

Fulham caretaker manager Scott Parker told BBC Sport: "We are a bit disappointed. We knew the task ahead of us. We had a game plan that we worked hard on this week. We wanted to take the sting out of Wolves. "It's a tough place to come here but I felt we dominated the ball today and for us that's the best way to defend. We have conceded one goal in four now and that's down to the players. Our main aim now is next year and the task ahead, it's a big task and we know what we want to do."


Fulham's troubles on the road - stats

Wolves have won 57 points in the Premier League this season, the most by a newly promoted side since Ipswich Town in 2000-01 (66 points). Fulham have lost 25 Premier League games this season, the most by a newly promoted side since Derby County in 2007-08 (29 defeats). No player has more assists for Wolves in all competitions this season than Matt Doherty (eight). This was Fulham's 16th away Premier League defeat of the season - only Burnley in 2009-10 have lost more in a single season (17). Wolves named their 14th unchanged Premier League starting XI this season - no side has done so more often (also Burnley on 14).

What's next? Wolves are away at Liverpool on the final day of the season on Sunday, 12 May, while Fulham host Newcastle, with both matches at 15:00 BST.


Wolves

11Rui Patrício sub for Norrisat 90+3' 5Bennett 16Coady 15Boly sub for Kilmanat 90+3' 2Doherty 32Dendoncker 8Neves 28João Moutinho 19Castro Otto sub for Vinagreat 90+4' 9Jiménez 18JotaBooked at 7' Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 29Vinagre 31Norris 37Traoré 49Kilman

Fulham

25Rico 3R Sessegnon sub for Ayitéat 82' 22ChristieBooked at 73' 20Le MarchandBooked at 32mins 13Ream 23Bryan 10Cairney 5ChambersBooked at 22' 29Zambo Anguissa sub for Elliottat 88' 9Mitrovic 12Babel Substitutes 7Kebano 11Ayité 16Nordtveit 26Mawson 31Fabri 43S Sessegnon 56Elliott

Referee: Jonathan Moss Attendance: 30,456

         Wolves Fulham

Possession  39%  61%

Shots       19    6

Shots on Tgt 6    2

Corners      7    1

Fouls       10   15

Leander Dendoncker's fine volley saw Wolves finally break down Fulham

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo says it would be "stupid" to think about European football despite his side moving a step closer to a seventh-placed Premier League finish and potentially a Europa League spot next season with victory over Fulham. After a largely frustrating 75 minutes for the hosts at Molineux, Joao Moutinho played in Matt Doherty down the right for the defender to curl in a fine cross that Leander Dendoncker emphatically volleyed inside the near post. Wolves will be guaranteed to finish seventh in their first season after promotion if Leicester fail to beat Premier League leaders Manchester City on Monday. If Nuno's side do secure seventh and City subsequently beat Watford in the FA Cup final, then Wolves will land a Europa League place, returning to Europe after a 39-year wait. "The FA Cup still has to be played, it would be stupid to think about Europe," said Nuno. "It's nothing to do with the table, it's the how - the how is much more important. It started two years ago and we will never forget where we came from."

Superb Wolves forward Diogo Jota went close four times, twice sliding wide and twice drawing fine saves from Fulham keeper Sergio Rico, while Dendoncker also hit the bar with a header. The already-relegated visitors should have taken the lead on 62 minutes but Aleksandar Mitrovic scooped his first-time effort over the bar after he was picked out in the middle by Ryan Sessegnon. Fulham midfielder Harvey Elliott became the youngest ever Premier League player at 16 years and 30 days by coming on in the 88th minute.


Wolves fans wore the mask of Mexican WWE wrestler Sin Cara, who was at Molineux to support friend Raul Jimenez

Wolves have oddly had problems against struggling sides this season, having lost six of their 11 previous matches against teams in the bottom six heading into that round of fixtures. For long periods of this game, it looked like a compact but limited Fulham would add a goalless draw to that record but Wolves were determined not to let their last home game be a disappointment after a season of thrilling matches at Molinuex. Jota weaved his way past Fulham defenders all afternoon, picking up a yellow card for simulation early on, but more often drawing fouls and getting his team surging forward on the counter-attack. In the first half, a brilliant flick from Raul Jimenez led to Jota forcing Rico to palm it round corner, before he got past his man and slid wide across goal with his left foot. He similarly slipped a left-footed effort beyond the far post after the break and then saw a brilliant volley pushed onto the bar by Rico as the Portuguese ultimately failed to get the goal his performance deserved. Doherty then lashed a superb strike high into the net but was rightly called offside when Jonny's initial shot was deflected into his path. But Dendoncker finally broke through. Having seen his header from a corner rebound off the bar in the first half, the Belgium midfielder showed excellent technique to volley the ball from just behind his body and edge Wolves towards the highest finish for a promoted side since Ipswich came fifth in 2000-01.


Fulham look to the future - Parker 'proud' of Fulham performance despite loss Defeat ended a run of three successive victories for Fulham after their relegation was confirmed last month but there were again some promising signs from caretaker boss Scott Parker's side. They were comfortable in possession, albeit rarely incisive around Wolves' area, their defenders made some fine covering tackles and Rico impressed in goal, also denying Doherty's header at the near post and pushing away Ruben Neves' 25-yard drive. The visitors could even have had a club record fourth Premier League win in a row had Mitrovic not miscued his strike when free in the area after fine work from Sessegnon down the right, while Joe Bryan also drew a decent save from Rui Patricio. Ultimately this match just reinforced the gap between these two promoted sides, with Wolves plotting how they might even break into the top six and Fulham facing another tough task to return straight away from the Championship. And the Cottagers offered a brief nod to that future, bringing on Elliott, who beat the previous Premier League mark of former Fulham defender Matthew Briggs.  Briggs was 16 years and 68 days when he played against Middlesbrough in May 2007.


Man of the match - Diogo Jota (Wolves) Diogo Jota slalomed past numerous defenders, created chances and went close four times in an entertaining display

'An important win' - reaction

Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo told BBC Sport: "This is an important win, it was important to the atmosphere at Molineux. Everyone expected us to win but it was difficult because we faced a tough team. But I'm really pleased with the way we finished the season at home, the fans have been fantastic this season.  We had to be focused, organised and disciplined because Fulham had chances also, it was a tight game."

Fulham caretaker manager Scott Parker told BBC Sport: "We are a bit disappointed. We knew the task ahead of us. We had a game plan that we worked hard on this week. We wanted to take the sting out of Wolves. "It's a tough place to come here but I felt we dominated the ball today and for us that's the best way to defend. We have conceded one goal in four now and that's down to the players. Our main aim now is next year and the task ahead, it's a big task and we know what we want to do."

Fulham's troubles on the road - stats

Wolves have won 57 points in the Premier League this season, the most by a newly promoted side since Ipswich Town in 2000-01 (66 points).

Fulham have lost 25 Premier League games this season, the most by a newly promoted side since Derby County in 2007-08 (29 defeats).

No player has more assists for Wolves in all competitions this season than Matt Doherty (eight).

This was Fulham's 16th away Premier League defeat of the season - only Burnley in 2009-10 have lost more in a single season (17).

Wolves named their 14th unchanged Premier League starting XI this season - no side has done so more often (also Burnley on 14).

What's next?

Wolves are away at Liverpool on the final day of the season on Sunday, 12 May, while Fulham host Newcastle, with both matches at 15:00 BST.



Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Fulham 0.

Full Time 90'+4' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Fulham 0.

90'+4' Sub, (WW). Rúben Vinagre replaces Jonny. 90'+3' Sub, (WW). Will Norris replaces Rui Patrício. 90'+3' Sub, (WW). Max Kilman replaces Willy Boly. 90'+2' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Calum Chambers. 90'+1' Foul by Maxime Le Marchand (Fulham). 90'+1' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 90' Foul by Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham). 90' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 89' Joe Bryan (Fulham) wins a free kick on the left wing. 89' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 88' Hand ball by Ryan Babel (Fulham). 88' Sub, Fulham. Harvey Elliott replaces André-Frank Zambo Anguissa. 86' Attempt blocked. Cyrus Christie (Fulham) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Floyd Ayité. 84' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by João Moutinho. 83'Foul by Tim Ream (Fulham). 83' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing.  82' Sub, Fulham. Floyd Ayité replaces Ryan Sessegnon. 82' Hand ball by Ryan Babel (Fulham). 80' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Sergio Rico. 80' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. 79' Foul by Maxime Le Marchand (Fulham). 79' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Goal! 75'

Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Fulham 0. Leander Dendoncker (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Matt Doherty.

74' Attempt missed. Willy Boly (WW) with an attempt from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a set piece situation. Booking 73' Cyrus Christie (Fulham) is shown the yellow card. 73' Foul by Cyrus Christie (Fulham). 73' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 72' Offside, (WW). Jonny tries a through ball, but Willy Boly is caught offside. 72' Attempt blocked. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 72' Foul by André-Frank Zambo Anguissa (Fulham). 72' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 70' Foul by Ryan Sessegnon (Fulham). 70' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 69' Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 69' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 68' Attempt missed. Tom Cairney (Fulham) left footed shot from  outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Aleksandar Mitrovic. 65' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from the left side of the six yard box is too high. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 65' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Sergio Rico. 65' Attempt saved. Matt Doherty (WW) header from the left side of the six yard box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 64' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Sergio Rico. 64' Attempt saved. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Jonny. 62' Attempt missed. Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham) right footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Ryan Sessegnon. 55' Foul by Tom Cairney (Fulham). 55' Rúben Neves (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 54' Cyrus Christie (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 54' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 54' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jonny following a fast break. 52' Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 52' Foul by Willy Boly (WW). 49' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 46' Joe Bryan (Fulham) wins a free kick on the left wing. 46' Foul by Leander Dendoncker (WW).

Second Half

Second Half begins Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Fulham 0.

Half Time

45'+2' First Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Fulham 0.

45'+1' Attempt saved. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.  42' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Tom Cairney. 40' Corner, Fulham. Conceded by Rui Patrício. 40' Attempt saved. Joe Bryan (Fulham) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. 37' Attempt missed. Leander Dendoncker (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Diogo Jota. 35' Foul by Ryan Babel (Fulham). 35' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 35' Attempt missed. André-Frank Zambo Anguissa (Fulham) header from the centre of the box misses to the left.  Assisted by Ryan Babel with a cross following a set piece situation. 34' Tom Cairney (Fulham) wins a free kick on the right wing. 34' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 33' Attempt missed. Willy Boly (WW) header from very close range misses to the left. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a set piece situation. Booking 32' Maxime Le Marchand (Fulham) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 32' Foul by Maxime Le Marchand (Fulham). 32' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 31' Leander Dendoncker (WW) hits the bar with a header from the centre of the box. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 31' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Maxime Le Marchand. 31' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Leander Dendoncker. 29' Foul by Calum Chambers (Fulham). 29' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 27' Ryan Babel (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 27' Foul by Conor Coady (WW). 25' Attempt blocked. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Booking 22' Calum Chambers (Fulham) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 22' Foul by Calum Chambers (Fulham). 22' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 16' Foul by Ryan Babel (Fulham). 16' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 15' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho. 12' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is too high following a corner. 11' Corner, (WW). Conceded by Sergio Rico. 11' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. Booking 7'Diogo Jota (WW) is shown the yellow card. 7' Diogo Jota (WW) has gone down, but that's a dive. 6' Ryan Sessegnon (Fulham) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 6' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 3' Cyrus Christie (Fulham) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 3' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 2' Attempt saved. Joe Bryan (Fulham) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Kick Off First Half begins.


Wolves' Diogo Jota has scored seven goals in his last eight appearances at Molineux in all competitions

TEAM NEWS

Nuno Espirito Santo says Wolves have no injury problems, so he could name the same starting line-up for a third consecutive game. The head coach has also indicated that third-choice goalkeeper Will Norris, 25, may feature in one of their two remaining matches. Fulham full-back Denis Odoi is ruled out after suffering concussion during the 1-0 victory against Cardiff. Timothy Fosu-Mensah, Marcus Bettinelli and Lazar Markovic remain sidelined.

Wolves boss hails partnership between Jota and Jimenez

"I saw him faceplant and he did look a bit unconscious" - Fulham boss Parker on Odoi concussion

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@alistairmann01: Regardless of whether seventh place will earn Europa League qualification, it is a target which Wolves are keen to confirm. To be the team just behind the so-called big six is impressive, particularly for a side only promoted a year ago. The nature of that potential achievement is accentuated by Fulham's immediate return to the Championship; they too had high hopes 12 months ago, at the very least of consolidation. Wanderers' outstanding campaign has been tempered somewhat by a string of surprisingly poor results against the bottom six, and with Fulham having won all three matches since their relegation was confirmed, the hosts may find this fixture a genuine challenge.


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "When you perform well and achieve good results against tough teams and opponents, it always increases the levels of confidence. In every game when things aren't going well, we try to achieve a moment of reaction - from all of us. The focus is always to improve in training and then try to perform well in the competition."

Fulham caretaker manager Scott Parker: "It's a difficult league to go and win three on the bounce and the players have done very well. We've shown the quality we have. Now we are three or four weeks from knowing we have been relegated, it is probably best now we really move things forward. Whether that is me leading this team trying to get back into the Premier League or whether it is somebody else, it is probably better it happens a bit quicker than later."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

Fulham keep on winning, and keep on keeping clean sheets too. It has obviously come too late to keep them up, but their recent results should mean Scott Parker gets the job permanently. I think the Cottagers' run ends on Saturday, though. Wolves have had an extremely impressive campaign and they should sign off with a win in their final home game. They deserve a fantastic send-off. Prediction: 2-0


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head - Fulham are winless in 14 league and cup games away to Wolves since a 4-0 victory in the second tier in April 1985 (D4, L10). The Cottagers have lost three of their four Premier League games at Molineux, conceding twice in each of those defeats.

Wolverhampton Wanderers have lost six of their 11 league games against the teams in the bottom six prior to the latest round of matches, compared to just three defeats in 11 fixtures versus the top six.  If matches against the bottom six were excluded, they would be third in the table, behind only Liverpool and Manchester City. Victory would give Wolves 57 points, the highest Premier League total by a newly-promoted club since Ipswich's haul of 66 in 2000-01. A seventh-place finish would also be the best performance by top-flight newcomers since Ipswich ended fifth in 2001. Nuno Espirito Santo's side are unbeaten in their last seven top-flight games at Molineux (W5, D2).

Diogo Jota has had a hand in seven goals in his last eight Premier League games, scoring four and assisting three - as many as he managed in his first 23 appearances.

Jota has scored seven goals in his last eight appearances at Molineux in all competitions.

Fulham could win four consecutive top-flight games for the first time since a five-match sequence from February to April 1966. The Londoners have taken nine points from their last three Premier League fixtures - as many as in their previous 20 matches combined (W2, D3, L15). They have also kept three successive clean sheets, more than in their previous 37 top-flight games. A fourth successive shut-out would equal their club record in the top flight. Ryan Sessegnon has scored in his last two league games against Wolves, though both of those matches were at Craven Cottage.


 

36 A Sat 27 Apr 15:00 Watford     

36 Watford Gray (49') Wolves 2 Jiménez (41'), Jota (77')

HT 0-1


Si Senor, give the ball to Raúl and he will score.


Wolves moved four points clear of Watford in the race for seventh place in the Premier League as goals from Raul Jimenez and Diogo Jota helped Nuno Espirito Santo's side earn all three points at Vicarage Road. Jimenez opened the scoring with his 13th league goal of the season, turning Jota's low cross past Ben Foster from point-blank range. Andre Gray capitalised on an error from Ryan Bennett to equalise for Watford shortly after the restart, but a mistake from Foster allowed Wolves to retake the lead with 13 minutes remaining.  Foster misjudged Ruben Neves' long ball into the Watford penalty area, allowing Jota to head into the unguarded net to seal the win for the visitors. The result lifts Wolves on to 54 points, while Watford drop to ninth.

Tim Spiers report & E&S pic

After both sides exchanged good chances Jimenez broke the deadlock just before half-time, heading home Diogo Jota's pinpoint cross.  Andre Gray equalised just after the break following a howler from Ryan Bennett who gifted the ball to Gerard Deulofeu, but Jota won it late on when he took advantage of Ben Foster's error to slam home Ruben Neves' cross.

Analysis

Twenty days doesn't exactly render this particular dish cold, but revenge was still oh-so sweet for Wolves. They struck a potentially decisive blow in the 'battle for seventh' with a gutsy win to exact some retribution three weeks after their Wembley nightmare, writes Tim Spiers at Vicarage Road. Let it never be said that this Wolves team lacks character. They possess it by the bucketload and have responded admirably in this, their litmus test of a week as they look to secure potential European football at Molineux for the first time in almost four decades. There was despondency after the defeat to Southampton and the draw against Brighton. Following big, big wins over Arsenal and Watford there is euphoria again and deep, deep pride at this team's success. Whatever happens in the last two matches it's been a wonderful, never-to-be-forgotten season.  But with a game against already-relegated Fulham to come at Molineux next week, albeit a Fulham who've won three on the spin, what a fantastic opportunity they have to put the icing on this golden cake and finish 'best of the rest', before praying Manchester City can do them a favour and open a door to Europe. They were gutsy here. Nuno forever talks of needing to 'compete' in every game and boy did they have to do that against a pumped-up Watford team. There was plenty of needle in this one, on and off the pitch, but Nuno's team stood their ground and gained a foothold, allowing their quality to shine through, especially via the prolific Jota and Jimenez who yet again both got on the scoresheet.  There were huge efforts all over the field though. Jonny and Doherty rampaged down the flanks, the midfield trio did as good as they have against the troublesome Hornets this season, Coady and Boly were excellent and Bennett, despite his clumsy error, had earlier saved a potential goal with an excellent challenge on the pesky Deulofeu.  It was via Jota and Jimenez that they won it, though. The best Wolves pairing since Bull and Mutch? That's an argument for the pub tomorrow afternoon but in terms of quality they're up there with the best Wolves have had. They're a force to be reckoned with, they know each other's games inside out and they're working beautifully in tandem. If they continue this form next season, who knows where they can take Wolves.  As for the here and now, seventh will do just nicely.


Match report pic BBC Getty Images

Nuno didn't alter the starting XI or the subs from the team that had beaten Arsenal 3-1 on Wednesday night.

Watford were without the suspended Troy Deeney – who stuck by his comments about Raul Jimenez's mask in his pre-match programme notes – so Gerard Deulofeu partnered Wolverhampton-born Andre Gray up front. The teams came into the game separated by just a point and had played out two very even games, especially at Wembley just 20 days earlier.  So it was absolutely no surprise that there was barely anything to choose between the sides in a tight first half, played out in a fraught atmosphere both on and off the pitch. Players from both teams were leaving in boots here and there – while in the stands there were plenty of Wembley songs from the home fans – and also a chant of "where's your f*****g mask?" to Jimenez.  There was barely any goalmouth action in the first 20 minutes. It wasn't dull by any means but the two teams were cancelling each other out. Ruben Neves crunched Wembley match-winner Deulofeu with a fair ball-winning tackle which left the Spaniard limping, but he was soon to burst into life and cause Wolves a number of problems. He had the game's first real opportunity when he was played in behind Boly but, to the delight of the travelling supporters behind that goal, he fell over and scuffed his shot from 15 yards. Then Wolves broke at pace, predictably via the superb Jota who took on two players and slotted to the overlapping Dendoncker on the right – he played across the six-yard box for Jimenez, but the Mexican couldn't quite connect properly and Capoue blocked and cleared. It was a golden chance. The menacing Deulofeu then burst through the heart of the Wolves defence and looked set to fire goalwards, before Ryan Bennett stole the ball off his toes in the nick of time. From the resulting corner it really should have been 1-0 to the hosts but Will Hughes sent a free header over the bar from just four yards after Wolves failed to clear.  The game was opening up now – and Wolves struck just before half-time in clinical fashion.


After superb work from the excellent Otto and Neves in the build-up, keeping play alive, Jota whipped a perfect cross towards his strike partner Jimenez and he made absolutely no mistake with a planted six-yard header past Ben Foster. There was no mask this time but the striker pointed to his name in front of the Watford supporters after netting his 13th of the season in the league, a Premier League record for a Wolves player. With a good half's work under their belt Wolves will have been hoping to keep things steady and calm at the start of the second period and quell any Watford momentum. Instead they gift-wrapped an equalising goal to the Hornets.


Just four minutes into the half Bennett sent a pass back to his own goal, not spotting the lurking Deulofeu. Patricio did well to smother at his feet but Gray was there to smash into the net from the edge of the area, past a helpless Boly on the line. It was a kamikaze mistake. Wolves responded well, with Jota heading Doherty's whipped cross over from six yards, before Doherty shanked at the ball from Foster's unconvincing clearance. Jota then sent another teasing cross towards Dendoncker, arriving late, but it just evaded the Belgian international.  With 20 minutes remaining it was on a knife edge with both sides searching for a winner. Coady threw himself at the ball to block a well-struck Hughes shot, while a Moutinho boomer from range deflected just over at the other end. It was too close to call...but then Wolves struck again with just 12 minutes left. Neves swung over a cross from deep to the back post where a flailing Foster missed the ball and Jota guided a cracking finish into the net to send the 2,200 away supporters into ecstasy. Patricio's goal wasn't seriously troubled in the closing stages or five minutes of stoppages time, with Wolves defending with organisation and calm. Jota surely should have earned a penalty when being taken down by Kabasele late on with the Watford man not winning the ball.

But it mattered not. What a win. "We're all going on a European tour" the away fans sang at full-time. Wolves are a step closer to doing just that.


Watford

26Foster 21Femenía 6Mariappa 15Cathcart sub for Successat 82'Booked at 85mins 25Holebas Booked at 62mins 29Capoue Booked at 90mins 16Doucouré 19Hughes sub for Kabaseleat 74' 37Pereyra 7Deulofeu 18Gray Substitutes 1Gomes 2Janmaat 10Success 11Masina 12Sema 14Chalobah 27Kabasele

Wolves

11Rui Patrício 5Bennett 16Coady 15Boly 2Doherty 32Dendoncker 8Neves 28João Moutinho Booked at 61mins 19Castro Otto 9Jiménez sub for Cavaleiroat 87' 18Jota Booked at 84mins sub for Gibbs-Whiteat 90+7' Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 21Ruddy 27Saïss 29Vinagre 37Traoré

Referee: Simon Hooper Attendance: 20,323

Stats    Watford Wolves

Possession  57%  43%

Shots       10   11

Shots on Tgt 1    4

Corners      4    5

Fouls       10   11


Match ends, Watford 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

Full Time 90'+8' Second Half ends, Watford 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

90'+7' Sub, (WW) Morgan Gibbs-White replaces Diogo Jota. Booking 90'+6' Etienne Capoue (Wat) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 90'+6' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wat). 90'+6' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 90'+5' Delay over. They are ready to continue.  90'+4' Delay in match Diogo Jota (WW) because of an injury. 90'+2' Offside, (WW) João Moutinho tries a through ball, but Leander Dendoncker is caught offside. 90'+2' Offside, (WW) João Moutinho tries a through ball, but Leander Dendoncker is caught offside. 90'+2' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wat). 90'+2' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 88' Foul by José Holebas (Wat). 88' Ivan Cavaleiro (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing.  87' Sub, (WW) Ivan Cavaleiro replaces Raúl Jiménez. 86' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 86' Delay in match Leander Dendoncker (WW) because of an injury. Booking  85' Isaac Success (Wat) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 85' Foul by Isaac Success (Wat). 85' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. Booking 84' Diogo Jota (WW) is shown the yellow card. 84' Offside, (WW) Matt Doherty tries a through ball, but Diogo Jota is caught offside. 82'Gerard Deulofeu (Wat) wins a free kick in the attacking half.   82' Sub, (Wat) Isaac Success replaces Craig Cathcart because of an injury.

Goal!

77' Goal! Watford 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Rúben Neves.

76' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Craig Cathcart. 76' Attempt blocked. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Willy Boly.  74' Sub, (Wat) Christian Kabasele replaces Will Hughes. 73' Attempt blocked. Will Hughes (Wat) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Gerard Deulofeu. 72' Attempt missed. Roberto Pereyra (Wat) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Abdoulaye Doucouré. 70' Corner, (Wat) Conceded by João Moutinho. 68' Will Hughes (Wat) wins a free kick on the right wing. 68' Foul by Willy Boly (WW). 67' Offside, (Wat) Roberto Pereyra tries a through ball, but Andre Gray is caught offside. 67' Attempt blocked. Roberto Pereyra (Wat) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Gerard Deulofeu. 66' Offside, (WW) Diogo Jota tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 66' Roberto Pereyra (Wat) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 66' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). Booking 62' José Holebas (Wat) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 62' Foul by José Holebas (Wat). 62' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. Booking 61' João Moutinho (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 61' Will Hughes (Wat) wins a free kick on the right wing. 61' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 58' Foul by Abdoulaye Doucouré (Wat). 58' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 58' Attempt missed. Matt Doherty (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left following a corner. 57' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Adrian Mariappa. 55' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Matt Doherty with a cross. 51' José Holebas (Wat) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 51' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 50' Foul by Gerard Deulofeu (Wat). 50' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half.  Goal! 49' Goal! Watford 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Andre Gray (Wat) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the high centre of the goal. 48' Offside, (WW) Willy Boly tries a through ball, but Diogo Jota is caught offside. 47' Offside, (Wat) José Holebas tries a through ball, but Adrian Mariappa is caught offside. 47' Roberto Pereyra (Wat) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 47' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 46' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

HT

        Watford Wolves

Possession 55% 45%

Shots       5   6

Shots on Tgt 0  3

Corners     3   3

Fouls       3   5

 

Half Time 45'+2' First Half ends, Watford 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

45'+2' Corner, (Wat) Conceded by Conor Coady. 45' Etienne Capoue (Wat) wins a free kick on the right wing. 45' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 44' Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Wat) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Will Hughes. 43' Offside, (WW) Conor Coady tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. Goal!

41' Goal! Watford 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Diogo Jota with a cross following a corner. 41' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jonny with a cross. 41' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from a difficult angle on the right is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 40' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Etienne Capoue.  39' Attempt missed. Will Hughes (Wat) header from very close range is close, but misses the top right corner. Assisted by Adrian Mariappa following a corner.  39'Attempt missed. Adrian Mariappa (Wat) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Roberto Pereyra following a corner. 38' Corner, (Wat) Conceded by Ryan Bennett. 36' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Kiko Femenía. 36' Foul by Will Hughes (Wat). 36' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 34' Will Hughes (Wat) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 34' Foul by Jonny (WW). 33' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from very close range is blocked. Assisted by Leander Dendoncker. 30' Hand ball by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 29' Corner, (Wat) Conceded by Rui Patrício. 24' Attempt missed. Gerard Deulofeu (Wat) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Roberto Pereyra. 21' Attempt saved. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top left corner. 21' Foul by Craig Cathcart (Wat). 21' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 19' Kiko Femenía (Wat) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 19' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 16' Offside, (Wat) Etienne Capoue tries a through ball, but Gerard  Deulofeu is caught offside. 13'Attempt blocked. Roberto Pereyra (Wat) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 12' Corner, (Wat) Conceded by Willy Boly. 8' Attempt missed. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right following a corner.7' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Kiko Femenía. 5' Foul by Adrian Mariappa (Wat). 5' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 3' Will Hughes (Wat) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 3' Foul by Jonny (WW). Kick Off - First Half begins.


MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@vksparks: The heartbreak of that FA Cup semi-final defeat by Watford at Wembley still lingers for Wolves.  Here, then, is a chance to exact some revenge in the hotly-contested race for seventh place - which, unless Watford win the Cup, would bring European football next season, something neither of these clubs have tasted since the 1980s. Regardless of how it ends, it has been a stellar campaign from both sides. They've comfortably broken their record Premier League points tallies, playing some golden football along the way - and if both attacks are on form, this could be another cracker.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Watford head coach Javi Gracia: "All the games we have played before [against Wolves] have been very tough, very equal and very close games. We know it will be the same in this situation. We try to achieve the points that are in play because we know it is very important to have a good chance to achieve at the end of the season seventh place."

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "Revenge or payback situations can blind you, and take away from your focus and attention. It's just a new game (from Wolves' FA Cup semi-final defeat to Watford), a new challenge. Our idea is always to go game by game. The past is the past. We work on that and motivate ourselves, prepare ourselves to compete. We assess their strengths, weaknesses and prepare ourselves. We know they're a good team, so it'll be a tough challenge."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION

This is a rematch of the FA Cup semi-final which Watford won, and I have a feeling Wolves will get their revenge. Prediction: 0-2

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head - this fixture comes 20 days after Watford beat Wolves 3-2 in extra-time in their FA Cup semi-final. Watford are looking to complete the league double over Wolves for just the second time, having done so in 2007-08. Wolves are yet to score in three previous top-flight meetings, including October's 2-0 defeat in the reverse fixture.

Watford are one short of 100 top-flight home victories. They are unbeaten in their past 14 league fixtures against sides outside the established top six (W8, D6). The Hornets have conceded in nine successive matches, the longest current run without a clean sheet in the division. Watford have lost just one of their last 11 home league games against promoted sides, winning the most recent three. This is Javi Gracia's 50th Premier League fixture as Watford head coach (W18, D11, L20). Gerard Deulofeu has scored eight goals in his past 10 games, including two in Watford's FA Cup semi-final win over Wolves. Andre Gray has scored four goals in his last six home appearances in all competitions.

Wolverhampton Wanderers are winless in five away league fixtures, drawing two and losing three.

They are the first promoted side to reach 50 Premier League points since Birmingham in 2009-10.  Nuno Espirito Santo's team have not kept a clean sheet in 13 away league games, the longest current run in the division.  They have lost only two of seven away matches against fellow current top-10 sides this term (W2, D3).  Wolves have only used 19 players in the Premier League this season. Liverpool, in 1995-96, are the only other side to have used as few in a Premier League campaign.



 

31 H Arsenal (rescheduled) 19:45 Weds 24 April  WW 3 Neves (28'), Doherty (37'), Jota (45'+2) Arsenal 1 Papastathopoulos (80')

HT 3-0

Matt Doherty has been involved in 15 Wolves goals this season in all competitions - eight goals and seven assistsArsenal missed the chance to go fourth in the Premier League as they were outplayed by Wolves at Molineux. Ruben Neves put the hosts ahead with a direct free-kick from 25 yards before Matt Doherty headed in a second. Diogo Jota added a third just before half time after the Gunners gave the ball away and he ran at the away defence before firing a shot under goalkeeper Bernd Leno. Arsenal defender Sokratis headed in from Granit Xhaka's corner in the 80th minute but it was not enough for the Gunners. The victory takes Wolves up from 10th to seventh, while Arsenal remain fifth, one point adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea and four behind north London rivals Tottenham.

With three games left of the season, Wolves are in contention to qualify for Europe. If Manchester City beat Watford in the FA Cup final the team finishing seventh in the Premier League will take the last available European spot and enter next season's Europa League at the second qualifying round phase. Reaction and analysis from Wednesday's Premier League matches.

Wolves impress again against a top-six side = Wolves' win continues a remarkable campaign for Nuno Espirito Santo's side in their first season since winning promotion from the Championship. The hosts went into the match without a win in three games in all competitions but were on top even when the game was goalless as Joao Moutinho curled wide from 25 yards and Raul Jimenez just failed to connect with Jonny's through ball. Neves then gave Wolves a deserved lead in the 28th minute with a fine free-kick after Nacho Monreal had clumsily bundled over Jonny in a central position. A well-worked move from a short corner - albeit with Arsenal's defenders not applying pressure - left Jonny with space to cross and Doherty got to the ball before Leno to head into the net and double his side's lead. Another Arsenal error led to Wolves' third as the ball was given away to Jota, who drove forward and shot under Leno, who should have done better. This win means Wolves have picked up 16 points in their matches against the current top six this season, a record that includes wins over Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester United and now Arsenal. Wolves are also aiming to become the first newly-promoted side to finish in the top eight since Reading finished eighth in 2005-06, while no newly promoted team has finished higher than that since Ipswich Town were fifth in 2000-01.



Wolves

11Rui Patrício 5BennettBooked at 84mins 16Coady 15Boly 2DohertyBooked at 17mins  32Dendoncker 8Neves 28João Moutinho sub for Gibbs-Whiteat 90'minutes 19Castro Otto

9Jiménez sub for Traoréat 82'minutes 18Jota sub for Cavaleiroat 78'minutes Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 21Ruddy 27Saïss 29Vinagre 37Traoré

Arsenal

19Leno 15Maitland-Niles 5Papastathopoulos 6Koscielny 18MonrealBooked at 27mins 11TorreiraBooked at 45mins sub for Guendouziat 59'minutes 34XhakaBooked at 31mins 7Mkhitaryan sub for Kolasinacat 58'minutes 10Özil 17Iwobi sub for Nketiahat 71'minutes 9Lacazette Substitutes 1Cech 4Elneny 20Mustafi 29Guendouzi 31Kolasinac 49Nketiah 59Willock

Referee: Stuart Attwell Attendance: 31,436


          Wolves Arsenal

Possession  29%   71%

Shots       11    10

Shots on Tgt 3     1

Corners      4     5

Fouls       12     8


Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 3, Arsenal 1.

Full Time 90'+5' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 3, Arsenal 1.

90'+4' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Granit Xhaka. 90'+4' Foul by Sead Kolasinac (Arsenal). 90'+4' Adama Traoré (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 90'+3' Offside, Arsenal. Granit Xhaka tries a through ball, but Eddie Nketiah is caught offside. 90'+2' Attempt blocked. Eddie Nketiah (Arsenal) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Alexandre Lacazette. 90'+1' Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing. 90'+1' Foul by Willy Boly  90' Sub, (WW) Morgan Gibbs-White replaces João Moutinho. 87' Foul by Granit Xhaka (Arsenal). 87' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing..  90' Sub, (WW) Morgan Gibbs-White replaces João Moutinho. 87' Foul by Granit Xhaka (Arsenal).  87' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 84'Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Willy Boly. Booking  84' Ryan Bennett (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 84' Eddie Nketiah (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing. 84' Foul by Ryan Bennett (WW). 83' Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Rúben Neves.  82' Sub, (WW) Adama Traoré replaces Raúl Jiménez. Goal! 80' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 3, Arsenal 1. Sokratis (Arsenal) header from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Granit Xhaka with a cross following a corner. 79' Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Willy Boly.  78' Sub, (WW) Ivan Cavaleiro replaces Diogo Jota. 77' Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing. 77' Foul by Conor Coady (WW). 76' Offside, (WW) Rúben Neves tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 74' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Ainsley Maitland-Niles. 73' Attempt blocked. Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eddie Nketiah.  71' Sub, Arsenal. Eddie Nketiah replaces Alex Iwobi. 68' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jonny. 62' Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 62' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 60' Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 60' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 60' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 59' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Sokratis.   59' Sub, Arsenal. Matteo Guendouzi replaces Lucas Torreira.  58' Sub, Arsenal. Sead Kolasinac replaces Henrikh Mkhitaryan. 58' Foul by Sokratis (Arsenal). 58' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 52' Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 52' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 50' Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing. 50' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 47' Attempt missed. Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Granit Xhaka.

Second Half

Second Half begins Wolverhampton Wanderers 3, Arsenal 0.

            Wolves  Arsenal

Possession  28%     72%

Shots        9       7

Shots on Tgt 3       0

Corners      2       2

Fouls        5       6

 

Half Time 45'+3' First Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 3, Arsenal 0.

Goal! 45'+2'

Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 3, Arsenal 0. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box to the centre of the goal.

45'+1' Offside, Arsenal. Granit Xhaka tries a through ball, but Alexandre Lacazette is caught offside. Booking 45' Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 45' Foul by Lucas Torreira (Arsenal). 45' Rúben Neves (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 44' Attempt blocked. Matt Doherty (WW) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Rúben Neves. 43' Alex Iwobi (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 43' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 41' Attempt blocked. Granit Xhaka (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mesut Özil. 40' Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Ryan Bennett. 40' Attempt blocked. Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Nacho Monreal. Goal!

37' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Arsenal 0. Matt Doherty (WW) header from the centre of the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jonny with a cross following a corner.

36' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Bernd Leno. 35' Attempt missed. Alexandre Lacazette (Arsenal) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Granit Xhaka. 34'Offside, Arsenal. Ainsley Maitland-Niles tries a through ball, but Alexandre Lacazette is caught offside. 34' Ainsley Maitland-Niles (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 34' Foul by Jonny (WW). 33' Attempt missed. Ryan Bennett (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 32' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Granit Xhaka. 32' Attempt blocked. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Booking 31' Granit Xhaka (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card. 31' Foul by Laurent Koscielny (Arsenal). 31' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 30' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high. Assisted by Jonny. Goal! 28'

Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Arsenal 0. Rúben Neves (WW) from a free kick with a right footed shot to the bottom left corner.

Booking 27'Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 26' Foul by Nacho Monreal (Arsenal). 26' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 25' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from very close range is too high. Assisted by Willy Boly with a headed pass. 24' Foul by Sokratis (Arsenal). 24' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 22' Sokratis (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 22' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 21' Attempt missed. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Matt Doherty. 21' Hand ball by Lucas Torreira (Arsenal). 18' Attempt blocked. Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is blocked. 17'Matt Doherty (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 17' Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing. 17' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW).16'Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 16' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 17' Matt Doherty (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 17' Nacho Monreal (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing. 17' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 16' Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 16' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 7'Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Matt Doherty. 5' Attempt missed. Henrikh Mkhitaryan (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. 3' Attempt missed. Lucas Torreira (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Mesut Özil. 2' Foul by Lucas Torreira (Arsenal). 2' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. Kick Off First Half begins.


TEAM NEWS

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has a fully-fit squad to choose from.  He is expected to recall Belgian international midfielder Leander Dendoncker, who was omitted from the starting line-up on Saturday.  Arsenal will be without Aaron Ramsey and Denis Suarez through injury, while Granit Xhaka is being assessed. Sokratis Papastathopoulos returns after a two-match ban but Hector Bellerin, Rob Holding and Danny Welbeck all remain long-term injury absentees.   

 

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "When we look at Arsenal, we know they are a very strong team with good players and a good manager and it's a tough challenge, but we are ready for it. The strength of Arsenal is their team, the movements, the ideas they have. They are very good."

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery on the chances of his side securing a top four finish: "We have it in our hands. At the beginning of the season, after winter, we struggled in the table. We were in a worse position than we are now. Wednesday night is a big moment, match and challenge for us. We are playing away at a team that feels strong with their supporters. It's a good moment to try to do all we can, with intelligence."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

Wolves were held by Brighton on Saturday and it seems they struggle to beat teams who just sit in against them. I don't think it will be a problem on Wednesday because Arsenal will go at them. Prediction: 2-0


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

Arsenal are unbeaten in their nine previous Premier League encounters against Wolves, recording victories in seven of them.  Wolves are winless in 16 top-flight fixtures against Arsenal (D4, L12) since a 3-2 victory at Highbury in 1979. Wolves are without a home win versus the Gunners in all competitions in nine games (losing eight of those matches) since a 1-0 triumph in October 1978. November's reverse fixture finished 1-1, with Arsenal equalising in the 86th minute.

Wolverhampton Wanderers have won only two of their last nine Premier League fixtures (D4, L3).  They are unbeaten in their most recent nine home matches in all competitions, winning seven of them. Wolves have collected a club record-equalling 28 Premier League points at Molineux this term. They have earned 13 points against the established top six this season - only Liverpool and Manchester City have better records.  They have lost three of their 10 league matches against sides currently in the top six, as many as they have lost in five games versus teams in the relegation zone.

Arsenal are in danger of suffering back-to-back league defeats for the first time since their opening two fixtures of the season. They have lost four of their seven away games against sides currently in the top half of table. Unai Emery's side have kept only one clean sheet in their 16 away league matches in 2018-19. The Gunners have 66 points, which is their highest tally after 34 games since the 2014-15 season. Only Manchester City and Liverpool have scored more Premier League goals than Arsenal's tally of 68.


35 H Sat 20 Apr 15:00  Brighton    

35 WW 0 Brighton 0 HT 0-0 drops to 9th

Pix Express & Star

Diogo Jota and his team-mates endured a frustrating afternoon against Brighton at Molineux. Brighton manager Chris Hughton said there was "probably a bit of relief" among Seagulls fans after his side ended a run of five successive defeats to earn a valuable point at Wolves in their battle against relegation.  Keeper Mat Ryan was the hero for the visitors, who move three points clear of the Premier League bottom three.  First, Ryan bravely got down as Leander Dendoncker closed in on the rebound when Wolves dangerman Diogo Jota headed against a post midway through the second-half. Then, three minutes from time, Ryan was in the right place to stop the Belgian's header. "I'm not sure many people would have backed us to get any type of result, but we have," said Hughton. We asked the players for a response. It's very hard to come here - if you open up too much, they can hurt you.  We could have been better in our link-up play, but we knew if we could keep a clean sheet it would give us a chance."

In a meeting of the two beaten FA Cup semi-finalists, Brighton offered little as an attacking force and it is now 570 minutes since they last scored.  However, given their 12-goal advantage over third-bottom Cardiff, Saturday's point means even a shock win for the Bluebirds against title contenders Liverpool on Sunday will not be enough to send Hughton's men into the bottom three.  "The feeling in the changing room has been good," added the 60-year-old. "You don't become a bad team overnight. We conceded a lot of corners today. They've got some aggressive players, so we had to defend really well."

Wolves will surely feel it is two dropped points in their quest to be the 'best of the rest' by finishing seventh. They drop to ninth.


When Brighton beat Crystal Palace on 4 December to move into the top half of the Premier League, they were 12 points clear of the relegation zone. In the 19 games since, they have won only three times and collected 13 points. If that form was replicated over a full season, they would have eight points fewer than West Brom's 34 in 2005, the lowest number from any team not to go down.  Against that backdrop, it was perhaps no surprise Brighton adopted a policy of containment, which was not helped by the ninth-minute loss of Dutch midfielder Davy Propper to a hamstring injury. In the opening half hour, they had 20% possession and no shots - indeed, the Seagulls have only scored one first-half goal in the Premier League since the start of February.  Substitute Beram Kayal did at least try to end the barren scoring run after the break with a 30-yard shot that had Wolves keeper Rui Patricio scrambling as it flew over. That was about it for Brighton as an attacking force, although they will take some solace in their first clean sheet away from home in the league since October. Central defenders Shane Duffy and Lewis Dunk were outstanding in repelling in-form Raul Jimenez, even though Australia keeper Ryan took the plaudits at the end.  Despite Brighton's perilous position and their woeful form, Hughton retains the faith of supporters, who cheered their team off at the end, and the club's hierarchy. However, with trips to Tottenham and Arsenal to come before a final-day home encounter with Manchester City, next Saturday's meeting with Newcastle at the Amex looks hugely important.

Frustration for dominant Wolves -The inference is Nuno Espirito Santo's men find it hard to break down opponents who are not so bothered about attacking themselves. Wolves played up to that stereotype during a first half they dominated throughout without managing a shot on target. Jota came closest to breaking the deadlock, firing wide from 16 yards after surging into the box, then clipping the top of the bar as he slid in to meet a deflected Ruben Neves shot. The Portuguese hit the woodwork again after the break, with his header against a post causing the major scramble that turned into the nearest either side came to a goal.  Jimenez fired over from the edge of the area and Ryan easily dealt with Neves' shot from a similar position. However, while Wolves never looked likely to surrender an unbeaten home record that stretches back to 2 January, their Achilles heel of struggling against teams they should beat may end up costing them a Europa League place, which will be the reward for finishing seventh should Manchester City beat Watford in the FA Cup final.  

Man of the match - Mat Ryan (Brighton) - Not exactly overworked despite Wolves dominance, but Ryan was there when it mattered, getting down low as the boots were flying to stop Leander Dendoncker's goal-bound shot. Rare away clean sheet for Brighton - the stats - Brighton have lost just one of their past 10 league games against Wolves, winning four. Six of the past eight league games between Wolves and Brighton at Molineux have ended in a draw. Brighton have failed to score in their past five Premier League games, their worst run in the league since January 2016. Brighton kept just their second clean sheet on the road in the league this season, with their other shutout coming against Newcastle in October. No side have failed to have a shot on target in more Premier League games this season than Brighton (three - versus Liverpool, Watford and Wolves). Wolves have had 47 shots against Brighton this season without scoring, the most shots against a single opponent without finding the net since Tottenham against West Ham in 2010-11 (51). 'We knew it would be difficult' - what the managers said

Wolves must improve & be more clinical - Nuno Espirito Santo

Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo: "It was difficult. We had chances, we had a lot of the ball. This is football. It didn't happen today. Brighton defended well. Their main objective was not to concede. Sometimes the one that hits the post will go in. We recovered the ball very high up the pitch, which requires effort. It is not easy. The boys tried everything. Brighton put all the bodies in front of the goal. We knew how difficult it was going to be, but we should do better."

Chris Hughton hails 'big result' for Brighton

Brighton manager Chris Hughton: "We got a reaction and want to take value from the manner of the result. They have a lot of gifted players. We had to show work ethic and determination. If we had shown anything less we would not have got the result. Hopefully we can take that through until the end of the season. We are lacking a little bit of confidence in front of goal. If we can show that kind of determination we have a chance. We are on the back of two very disappointing results. We showed we are not such a bad team. We have been able to stay in the game against the big teams. We have not had a big defeat. Our worst defeat was Bournemouth."


Wolves

11Rui Patrício 5Bennett 16Coady 15Boly 2Doherty sub for Traoréat 84'17Gibbs-White sub for Dendonckerat 73' 8Neves 28João Moutinho 19Castro Otto sub for Vinagreat 67' 9Jiménez 18Jota Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 21Ruddy 27Saïss 29Vinagre 32Dendoncker 37Traoré

Brighton

1Ryan 2Bruno sub for Bernardoat 70' 4Duffy 5Dunk 3Bong 13Groß 6StephensBooked at 32mins 24Pröpper sub for Kayalat 10' 20March 17Murray 19Izquierdo Substitutes 7Kayal 9Locadia 10Andone 16Jahanbakhsh 27Button 30Bernardo 33Burn

Referee: Craig Pawson Attendance: 31,096


Match Stats

          Wolves Brighton

Possession 68%    32%

Shots      22      5

Shots on Tgt 5     0

Corners    14      1

Fouls       0      8


Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.

Full Time 90'+4' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.

90' Attempt missed. Willy Boly (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Adama Traoré. 88' Attempt blocked. Solly March (BHA) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Dale Stephens. 87' Attempt saved. Leander Dendoncker (WW) header from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Willy Boly. 86' Rúben Vinagre (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 86' Foul by Solly March (BHA). 86' Attempt blocked. Rúben Vinagre (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho. 85' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Bernardo. 84' Attempt saved. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by João Moutinho. 84' sub, (WW) Adama Traoré replaces Matt Doherty. 79' Ryan Bennett (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 79' Foul by Glenn Murray (BHA). 79' Attempt saved. Leander Dendoncker (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by João Moutinho. 78' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Lewis Dunk. 76' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Solly March. 75' Attempt missed. Willy Boly (WW) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Matt Doherty with a cross. 74' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Beram Kayal. 74' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Mat Ryan. 73' Attempt saved. Leander Dendoncker (WW) right footed shot from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal. 73' Diogo Jota (WW) hits the left post with a header from the centre of the box. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. 73' sub, (WW) Leander Dendoncker replaces Morgan Gibbs-White. 70' sub, (BHA) Bernardo replaces Bruno because of an injury. 69' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high following a corner. 68' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Gaëtan Bong. 67' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Rúben Vinagre with a cross. 67' sub, (WW) Rúben Vinagre replaces Jonny. 65' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 64' Delay in match Bruno (BHA) because of an injury. 63' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 63' Foul by Beram Kayal (BHA). 61' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Mat Ryan. 61' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from very close range is saved in the bottom right corner. 61' Attempt blocked. Ryan Bennett (WW) header from very close range is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 61' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Dale Stephens. 61' Attempt blocked. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Morgan Gibbs-White. 57' Attempt missed. Shane Duffy (BHA) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Bruno with a cross. 54' Attempt missed. Beram Kayal (BHA) right footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Dale Stephens. 51' Attempt missed. Matt Doherty (WW) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Jonny. 60' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jonny with a cross. 49' Attempt missed. Lewis Dunk (BHA) with an attempt from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Pascal Groß with a cross following a corner. 48' Corner, (BHA) Conceded by Willy Boly.

Second Half

Second Half begins Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.

Half Time 45'+3' First Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Brighton and Hove Albion 0.

45'+2' Attempt missed. Dale Stephens (BHA) right footed shot from more than 35 yards is close, but misses to the left. 45'+1' Diogo Jota (WW) hits the bar with a left footed shot from the centre of the box. 45'+1' Attempt blocked. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Morgan Gibbs-White. 45' Attempt missed. Ryan Bennett (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a set piece situation. 44' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 44' Foul by Glenn Murray (BHA). 39' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Gaëtan Bong. 37' Offside, (BHA) Bruno tries a through ball, but Solly March is caught offside. 33' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Morgan Gibbs-White. Booking 32' Dale Stephens (BHA) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 32' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 32' Foul by Dale Stephens (BHA). 26' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Gaëtan Bong. 22' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Bruno. 19' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 19' Foul by Dale Stephens (BHA). 18' Attempt missed. Matt Doherty (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right. 17' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Shane Duffy. 16' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 16' Foul by José Izquierdo (BHA). 12' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Morgan Gibbs-White with a cross.  10' sub, (BHA) Beram Kayal replaces Davy Pröpper because of an injury. 10' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 8' Delay in match Davy Pröpper (BHA) because of an injury. 7' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Lewis Dunk. 5' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 4' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Shane Duffy. 2' Ryan Bennett (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 2' Foul by Glenn Murray (BHA). Kick Off First Half begins.


Lineups are announced and players are warming up.


TEAM NEWS

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has a fully-fit squad to choose from as his team continue their pursuit of a top-seven finish. Defender Ryan Bennett will be hoping for a recall after being dropped to the bench for the past two matches. Brighton have no new injury concerns following the midweek defeat at relegation rivals Cardiff. Anthony Knockaert serves the second game of a three-match suspension, while Jason Steele is a long-term absentee.


MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@SteveBowercomm: Imagine cruising along the motorway, your fuel light comes on and then suddenly you slow down hoping to reach the services before your vehicle cuts out. That reminds me of Brighton at the moment: five straight defeats without scoring a goal, at completely the wrong time of the season. A glance at their remaining fixtures only heightens the importance of this game after Tuesday's defeat by Cardiff. Cool heads and extremely big hearts are required for a team that have picked up only eight points since the turn of the year. The fact that Wolves still have seventh in their sights, and have taken 13 points from the last 15 at home, will only increase Brighton's challenge at Molineux.


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Chris Hughton: "As regards any criticism, it's normal and it's understandable. If there are going to be good things said about a team or individuals then at times when things haven't gone so well you have to accept that's how it is.  There is only one way we can ensure we stay in this division: that's by fighting as hard as we can, making sure that - if we're not able to score the goals we need - that we're not conceding. We're going to have to show a lot of resilience and togetherness in the games to come."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

Brighton are in freefall. They are out of the FA Cup and without a point or a goal in their past four league games, and it is hard to see them turning things around at Molineux.  Prediction: 2-0


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head


Brighton have triumphed in all seven top-flight meetings, keeping a clean sheet in the past six. The Seagulls can equal Manchester City's top-flight record of winning their first eight matches against the same opponent.

Wolverhampton Wanderers - have won only two of their past eight Premier League matches, drawing three and losing three. However, they have recorded victories in seven of their last eight home fixtures in all competitions, drawing the other. They could win three successive top-flight matches at Molineux for the first time since 1980. That streak was ended by a 2-0 loss to Brighton. A ninth home triumph of the season would set a new club Premier League record. Wolves have a better points-per-game ratio against the current top six in the Premier League this season (1.3) than they do against the sides currently in the bottom six (1.1). Raul Jimenez has scored 12 Premier League goals and needs just one more to break Steven Fletcher's Premier League club record, set in 2011-12. Diogo Jota has scored six goals and assisted three in his last seven home Premier League games. He has only failed to be involved in a goal in one game during that run - the 1-1 draw with Newcastle.

Brighton & Hove Albion have lost five consecutive matches in all competitions for the first time in 12 years. They have won just three times in the past 18 league fixtures (D3, L12). Only relegated sides Fulham and Huddersfield have accrued fewer points than Brighton's eight in 2019. Eight of their nine league victories this season have been by a one-goal margin. The Seagulls have earned just two points from a possible 39 away to teams in the top half of the table (D2, L11). Brighton have won only one of their last eight Premier League away games (D1, L6), and are without a clean sheet in 11 fixtures on the road. Glenn Murray has scored three goals in his last four away appearances in the Premier League.


34 A Sat 13 Apr 15:00 Southampton   

34 Saints 3 Redmond (2', 30'), Long (71') WW 1 Boly (28')


Southampton will "do everything" to reach 40 points after they took a huge step towards preserving their Premier League status for next season with victory over Wolves.  Nathan Redmond scored twice and substitute Shane Long scored a third after the break as the Saints moved eight points clear of 18th-placed Cardiff, who lost 2-0 at Burnley, with five games remaining. The 40-point mark has often been a target set by managers to secure Premier League survival. "We lost here not long ago against Cardiff and it seemed it [battle against relegation] would go right to the end, so we are very happy," said manager Ralph Hasenhuttl, who took over at the start of December when his club were in a precarious position. I can guarantee we will do everything we can to get to 40 points." Despite knowing their safety was far from certain, the tension was not noticeable among the Saints players who made a stunning start when Redmond slotted in the opener. Josh Sims, making his first Premier League start this season and big influence in the match, squared the ball to the feet of his team-mate who fired high past Rui Patricio at the near post.

Wolves equalised when Willy Boly headed in but soon after the restart the home side were back in front when Redmond clipped a shot over the Portuguese keeper. Substitute Shane Long settled any nerves among his team-mates and the home fans when he poked in Southampton's third in the 71st minute. The match began under grey skies and ended in sunshine as Southampton all but ensured their place in the English top flight for the 2019-20 campaign.

Adama Traore unusually tracked back to tackle on the line and concede a corner.  From this though, he looked as though he was already on the beach, failing to play the offside plan enabling Long's goal

When Austrian Hasenhuttl took over before festive period, Saints were 18th with only nine points from 15 games. Since then, wins over the likes of Arsenal, Everton, Leicester and Tottenham have seen his rejuvenated side steadily ease away from the mire. What Southampton fans will also be pleased by is their new manager's style of play, which is far more cavalier than the approach adopted by predecessor Mark Hughes. Forward Redmond is one player who appears to be revelling in it. Having not scored until Hasenhuttl took the reins, he has now netted seven times. His two finishes were those of a confident player. The first was instinctive and the second was well improvised after Patricio tried to close down the space. If he continues this rich form into next season then perhaps Redmond might find himself with a regular spot in Gareth Southgate's England side having been a stalwart at youth level. Both Sims, 22, who was on loan at Reading this season, and fellow forward Danny Ings also impressed in an excellent attacking display.

Raul Jimenez (centre) and his Wolves team-mates held their heads in their hands after the forward's awful miss

As for Wolves, they could still finish seventh which would be the highest-placed finish by a newly-promoted team to the Premier League since Ipswich came fifth in the 2000-01 season.  Despite going behind early on, there appeared to be no hangover from last week's FA Cup semi-final defeat as they began to control possession.  Their equaliser, courtesy of Boly's header, was deserved following a spell of heavy pressure, but a lapse in concentration at the back meant they were behind once again only two minutes later. What will be disappointing for manager Nuno Espirito Santo is that his players failed to trouble Saints keeper Angus Gunn.  This season's top scorer Raul Jimenez should have, but he was guilty of a woeful volley from eight yards out.


Nuno Espirito Santo says poor defending cost his side: "Our defensive structure was not the best - it is something that we have to look at. After we conceded the opener we controlled the game well and made chances until we drew level. We then went behind and were not able to stand up again and the second half was poor.  We left too many spaces and we allowed them to play. Today they were better than us and we have to regroup and bounce back immediately. Our trip to Spain was planned before and we feel it is a good moment to have an opportunity to train and be together."

Redmond's goal quickest since Van Dijk - the stats

Southampton have won eight of their 18 Premier League games under Ralph Hassenhuttl, as many as they had won in 52 games under their two previous permanent managers combined (Mark Hughes managed three from 22 and Mauricio Pellegrino managed five from 30). Wolves are winless in their last five Premier League away games (D2 L3), and have lost back-to-back league games on the road for the first time this season. Southampton have won six of their 13 Premier League games so far in 2019, as many as they had won in the whole of 2018 (P37 W6 D13 L18).

Wolves have not kept a clean sheet in any of their last 13 Premier League away games - only Arsenal (15) have had, and are currently enduring, a longer such run in the competition this season. Redmond's opener after a minute and 34 seconds was Southampton's quickest in a Premier League game since December 2016, when Virgil van Dijk netted after 1min 9secs seconds against Tottenham. There were just 118 seconds between Boly's equaliser and Redmond restoring Southampton's lead. Redmond scored just his second Premier League brace and his first since March 2017 against Watford. Long has scored in back-to-back Premier League games for the first time since May 2016.

 


Southampton

28Gunn 35Bednarek 3Yoshida 4Vestergaard 43Valery sub for Stephensat 84' 16Ward-Prowse 23Højbjerg 21BertrandBooked at 67' 39Sims sub for Romeuat 61' 22Redmond 9Ings sub for Longat 61' Substitutes 1McCarthy 5Stephens 7Long 10Austin 14Romeu 17Armstrong 33Targett

Wolves

11Rui Patrício 27SaïssBooked at 74' 16Coady 15Boly 2Doherty sub for Traoréat 60' 32Dendoncker 8Neves sub for Gibbs-Whiteat  69' 28João MoutinhoBooked at 40' 19Castro Otto 9JiménezBooked at 45' 18Jota sub for Hélder Costaat 87' Substitutes 5Bennett 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 21Ruddy 29Vinagre 37Traoré

Referee: Jonathan Moss Attendance: 31,708

     Southampton  Wolves

Possession 30%    70%

Shots      13     17

Shots on Tgt 6     2

Corners     4      9

Fouls      13      8


Match ends, Southampton 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

Full Time 90'+5'

Second Half ends, Southampton 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

90'+5' Attempt blocked. Morgan Gibbs-White (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho.  90'+4' Attempt missed. Willy Boly (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Adama Traoré with a cross following a set piece situation. 90'+4' Romain Saïss (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 90'+4' Foul by Shane Long (Saints). 90'+2' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 90'+2' Foul by Jannik Vestergaard (Saints). 90'+1' Foul by Hélder Costa (WW). 90'+1' Shane Long (Saints) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 89' Foul by Hélder Costa (WW). 89' Jan Bednarek (Saints) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 87' Sub, WW. Hélder Costa replaces Diogo Jota. 84' Sub, (Saints) Jack Stephens replaces Yan Valery because of an injury. 82' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 81' Delay in match Yan Valery (Saints) because of an injury. 81' Morgan Gibbs-White (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 81' Foul by Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (Saints). 80' Attempt saved. Jan Bednarek (Saints) right footed shot from very close range is saved in the bottom right corner. 79' Corner, (Saints) Conceded by Willy Boly. 78' Attempt blocked. Nathan Redmond (Saints) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.  77'João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 77' Foul by Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (Saints). 76' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 76' Foul by Shane Long (Saints). 75' Corner, (Saints) Conceded by Adama Traoré. Booking 74' Romain Saïss (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 74' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 74' Shane Long (Saints) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 74' Attempt saved. Maya Yoshida (Saints) left footed shot from very  close range is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Oriol Romeu. 74' Attempt missed. Oriol Romeu (Saints) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left following a corner. 73' Corner, (Saints) Conceded by Romain Saïss. Goal! 71' Goal! Southampton 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Shane Long (Saints) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Maya Yoshida following a corner. 71' Attempt missed. Maya Yoshida (Saints) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right following a corner. 71' Attempt missed. Maya Yoshida (Saints) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right following a corner. 70' Corner, (Saints) Conceded by Romain Saïss. 69' Sub, WW. Morgan Gibbs-White replaces Rúben Neves. 69' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left following a corner. 68' Corner, WW. Conceded by Jannik Vestergaard.  67' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 67' Foul by Yan Valery (Saints). Booking 67' Ryan Bertrand (Saints) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 67' Rúben Neves (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 67' Foul by Ryan Bertrand (Saints). 66' Offside, WW. Romain Saïss tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 61' Sub, (Saints) Oriol Romeu replaces Josh Sims. 61' Sub, (Saints) Shane Long replaces Danny Ings. 60' Sub, WW. Adama Traoré replaces Matt Doherty. 59' Attempt missed. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right following a corner. 59' Attempt blocked. Matt Doherty (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 59' Corner, WW. Conceded by Yan Valery. 55' Offside, WW. João Moutinho tries a through ball, but Matt Doherty is caught offside. 54' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 54' James Ward-Prowse (Saints) wins a free kick on the left wing. 52' Attempt blocked. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 52' Corner, WW. Conceded by Josh Sims. 49' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half.49' Foul by James Ward-Prowse (Saints). 48' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jonny. 46' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 46' Foul by Jan Bednarek (Saints). Second Half

Second Half begins Southampton 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

Half Time

45'+3' First Half ends, Southampton 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

Booking 45'+2' Raúl Jiménez (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.   45'+2' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 45'+2' Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (Saints) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 45'+1' Dangerous play by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 45'+1' Angus Gunn (Saints) wins a free kick in the defensive half.  44' Corner, WW. Conceded by Jannik Vestergaard. 44' Attempt missed. Pierre-Emile Højbjerg (Saints) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Yan Valery. Booking  40' João Moutinho (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 39' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 39' Nathan Redmond (Saints) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 35' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left following a corner. 35' Corner, WW. Conceded by Ryan Bertrand. 32' Attempt missed. Josh Sims (Saints) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Danny Ings with a through ball following a fast break. 31' Attempt missed. Josh Sims (Saints) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the left. Goal! 30' Goal! Southampton 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Nathan Redmond (Saints) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Danny Ings with a through ball.

Goal! 28' Goal! Southampton 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Willy Boly (WW) header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner.

27' Corner, WW. Conceded by Maya Yoshida. 26' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 25' Delay in match Nathan Redmond (Saints) because of an injury. 24' Attempt blocked. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 24' Corner, WW. Conceded by Ryan Bertrand. 19' Attempt saved. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. 18' Attempt missed. Romain Saïss (WW) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. 17' Corner, WW. Conceded by Maya Yoshida. 17' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Willy Boly. 15' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 15' Foul by James Ward-Prowse (Saints). 15' Attempt saved. Nathan Redmond (Saints) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Danny Ings. 14' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 14' Maya Yoshida (Saints) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 13' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 13' Foul by Nathan Redmond (Saints). 10' Attempt missed. Leander Dendoncker (WW) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a set piece situation. 9' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 9' Foul by Jannik Vestergaard (Saints). 7' Attempt missed. Willy Boly (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 7' Corner, WW. Conceded by Jannik Vestergaard. 7' Attempt blocked. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 7' Attempt blocked. Matt Doherty (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Leander Dendoncker. 4' Foul by Josh Sims (Saints). 4' Willy Boly (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. Goal!  2' Goal! Southampton 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. Nathan Redmond (Saints) right footed shot from very close range to the top right corner. Assisted by Josh Sims. Kick Off First Half begins. Lineups are announced and players are warming up.


TEAM NEWS

Southampton have on-loan striker Danny Ings available once again after he was ineligible to play against parent club Liverpool last time out.  Mario Lemina is still recovering from abdominal surgery, and Michael Obafemi is out for the rest of the season.  Wolves will recall goalkeeper Rui Patricio, who made way for John Ruddy in the FA Cup last weekend. Centre-back Ryan Bennett could also be restored to the starting line-up, with Romain Saiss preferred at Wembley.

Southampton chairman Ralph Krueger left the club

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@johnrodercomm: If you only include Premier League results from when Ralph Hasenhuttl took charge of Southampton in early December, the Saints would be 12th in the table and 12 points clear of the relegation zone.  They will also be encouraged by the fact they have scored in each of their last 11 league matches at St Mary's, while Wolves haven't kept a league clean sheet away from Molineux since early October. What impact, if any, will the FA Cup semi-final defeat by Watford have on the rest of the season for Wolves? A repeat of the 2-0 victory over Southampton back in September would be the perfect response.


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl on Wolves: "It's a very strong opponent, one of the most organised in the league [who have] made a fantastic job and beat a lot of big teams. They play a similar shape to what we do and it will be interesting tactically for us. Not an easy game. "I think they showed that they have a clear plan and also good players that can fill the plan with life. The whole way they want to play at the moment is a very successful one and it's not a coincidence they are so high in the table."

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "It's a tough challenge. They [Southampton] are well organised, have good players and a good manager.  Our pack [fans] are always present, so we hope Southampton is another full house with our pack behind us. It is amazing what they are giving us. We want to do it together."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

It will be interesting to see whether Wolves can bounce back from last week's FA Cup semi-final disappointment. We will find out how much it has affected them on Saturday. I think one more win will do it for Southampton in terms of safety, but even if they don't get it here, their run-in does not look too testing. Prediction: 1-0


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head Wolves are unbeaten in the past six meetings in all competitions, winning the last four.

Saints are without a goal in five hours and 39 minutes against Wolves since Alex Pearce scored in a 2-1 home Championship defeat in November 2008.

Southampton have won five of their 12 league games in 2019, only one fewer than they managed throughout 2018.

Three of their four home league wins this season came against sides who are in the top half of the table: Tottenham, Arsenal and Everton. Saints have scored in 11 successive home league fixtures since October's goalless draw with Newcastle.  They have lost five of their last six matches against newly-promoted sides, with four of those defeats occurring this season. The south coast side have dropped a league-high 23 points from winning positions this term, 15 of them at St Mary's.

Wolverhampton Wanderers are winless in their last four away league matches (D2, L2). They have lost six league fixtures against bottom half-of-the-table opponents, one more than versus top-half teams. Nuno Espirito Santo's side are without a clean sheet in 12 Premier League away fixtures. Wolves are looking to complete their second league double of the season, having so far only beaten West Ham both home and away.

Only Huddersfield have scored fewer first-half goals than the 12 by Wolves. Raul Jimenez has been directly involved in 19 Premier League goals this season, scoring 12 and assisting seven, which is 48% of Wolves' league total.


FACSF A Sun7 April Watford at Wembley live on BT ko 4pm

FA Cup Semi-Final Watford 3 Deulofeu (79', 104'), Deeney (90'+4 pen)

Wolves Doherty (36'), Jiménez (62')

HT 0-1 FT 2-2

Gerard Deulofeu delivered a sensational display after coming on as substitute to inspire Watford's dramatic comeback from two goals down to beat Wolverhampton Wanderers after extra time in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley.  With 11 minutes left, Wolves looked on course for their first FA Cup final since 1960 as they led through Matt Doherty's first-header and Raul Jimenez's superb chest down and volleyed finish.  Deulofeu, the maverick talent who had never quite fulfilled his potential at Barcelona, Everton and AC Milan, was sent on to rescue Watford after that second goal and fulfilled his mission in spectacular style. He produced an audacious angled flick to give Watford hope and they drew level in injury time as captain Troy Deeney drilled home from the penalty spot after he had been fouled by Leander Dendoncker. Deulofeu, however, was the catalyst and he showed composure and quality to provide the decisive contribution, steering a finish beyond John Ruddy in the 104th minute to send Watford to their first FA Cup final since 1984; they will meet Manchester City on 18 May.


Phil McNulty: Watford and Wolves rise to occasion to stage FA Cup classic.  Watford, to their eternal credit, never lost hope for one minute of this thrilling FA Cup semi-final even when Wolves looked to have victory in their grasp with a two-goal lead.  They had created chances but needed a spark to give meaning to all their good work - and it was the 25-year-old Spain international Deulofeu who provided it. Deulofeu was regarded as a teenage superstar in the making at Barcelona but could not deliver in a second spell at the Nou Camp after a fine season on loan at Everton. He produced occasional flashes of brilliance when he returned to Goodison Park but fell short and made his way to Vicarage Road to have another crack at the Premier League. Under the careful guidance of manager Javi Gracia, he has hinted at greater consistency - but this was his finest hour in England.  Inevitably, Watford's captain and leader Deeney also made his mark, "winning" a penalty then showing great nerve to lash his spot-kick past Ruddy. Watford's fans were a mixture of sheer elation and disbelief - and can now start plotting their return for the FA Cup final.  This was a performance of heart, quality and flashes of brilliance.

Wolves left heartbroken - Wolves players react to defeat - Wolves' players looked dejected as Deulofeu scored his second goal to complete the comeback in extra-time Wolves and their manager Nuno Espirito Santo will be pondering for a very long time how this got away from them - it was heartbreaking for him, his players and the vast old gold following inside Wembley.  They had victory in the palm of their hand but subsided under the late surge of pressure from Watford, fuelled by the brilliance of Deulofeu. Nuno had taken off the influential Ruben Neves and Diogo Jota late on to try to shore up the victory, a move perhaps understandable at the time but one that left them robbed of their talents during extra-time. Wolves were flagging and had nothing left to give in this pulsating, magnificent match and all the hard work done in the earlier rounds - when Liverpool and Manchester United were beaten at Molineux - was taken away from them. They came into this game on the back of six straight wins but defeat came in the most painful of circumstances.


'It happens if you believe' - reaction Javi Gracia Watford manager Javi Gracia's decision to bring on Gerard Deulofeu paid off in the second half Watford manager Javi Gracia, speaking to BBC Sport: "It was very tough. We started playing, working after [the FA Cup win over] Newcastle, after QPR, after Crystal Palace and now after Wolves. Everything was lost - we were able to show our character and at this moment I am very proud of my players. You always believe you can score one goal because in all the games this season we have always competed until the end. It wasn't different today. We tried until the end and sometimes it happens if you believe. Today we showed our strength as a squad, our belief. I am very proud."


Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo, speaking to BBC Sport: "It was an emotional game. We had it, and it got away from us. It was a sad moment, we cannot hide it. Now it is disappointment and sadness. When it comes to four minutes of injury time, we should have possession of the ball. We couldn't handle that and we got punished. We are disappointed. This is football, we must stand again, we have things to fight for, but I am very proud. I honestly think we should have done better in the last moments of the game."


Ending a bad streak - the best of the stats

Watford have qualified for the FA Cup final for just the second time in their history, having last done so in 1984. It was the first time they won at Wembley since May 1999 (2-0 v Bolton in the second tier play-off final) - they had lost five of their six games in all competitions at the venue before beating Wolves.

Since beating Aston Villa in the 1960 FA Cup semi-final, Wolves have been eliminated on each of their past five appearances at this stage of the tournament (1973, 1979, 1981, 1998 and 2019).

Watford have won 19 games in all competitions this season; their most as a top-flight club in a single campaign since 1986-87 (23). Deulofeu is the seventh player to score two in an FA Cup semi-final, and the first since Willian for Chelsea in April 2017 (v Spurs). Deeney has scored in both of his FA Cup semi-final appearances - previously doing so against Crystal Palace in April 2016. Wolves' Doherty scored his fourth goal in the FA Cup this season - only Newport striker Padraig Among (five) has netted more in the competition in 2018-19. Jota has been directly involved in 37 goals for Wolves (26 goals and 11 assists), the most of any player since his debut in August 2017.

What's next? Wolves hope to regain seventh spot in the Premier League when they travel to Southampton on Saturday, 13 April (15:00 BST); Watford host Arsenal on Monday, 15 April (20:00).

Watford

1Gomes 21Femenía sub for Janmaatat 108'6Mariappa 15Cathcart booked 54' 25Holebas booked 61' sub for Masinaat 98' 19Hughes sub for Deulofeuat 66' sub for Semaat 112' 29Capoue booked 101' 37Pereyra 16Doucouré 18Gray 9Deeney Substitutes 2Janmaat 7Deulofeu 11Masina 12Sema 20Quina 26Foster 27Kabasele Wolves 21Ruddy 27Saïss booked 10' 16Coady 15Boly 2Doherty 32Dendoncker 8Neves booked 25' sub for Bennettat 86' 28João Moutinho sub for Traoréat 102' 19Castro Otto sub for Vinagreat 105' 9Jiménez 18Jota sub for Cavaleiroat 89' Substitutes 5Bennett 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 29Vinagre 31Norris 37Traoré


        Watford Wolves

Possession 58%  42%

Shots      15   11

Shots on Tgt 3   6

Corners     7    6

Fouls      16   11


Match ends, Watford 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

120'+3' Second Half Extra Time ends, Watford 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

120'+1' Offside, (Wfd) Roberto Pereyra tries a through ball, but Troy Deeney is caught offside. 120'+1' Foul by Ken Sema (Wfd). 120'+1' Romain Saïss (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 120' Offside, (Wfd) Troy Deeney tries a through ball, but Ken Sema is caught offside. 118' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Adrian Mariappa. 114' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wfd). 114' Adama Traoré (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 112' Sub, (Wfd) Ken Sema replaces Gerard Deulofeu because of an injury. 112' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 112' Delay in match Gerard Deulofeu (Wfd) because of an injury. 110' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Gerard Deulofeu. 109' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wfd). 109' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 108' Sub, (Wfd) Daryl Janmaat replaces Kiko Femenía. 107' Offside, (WW) Ivan Cavaleiro tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 107' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Adam Masina. 106' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wfd). 106' Adama Traoré (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Second Half Extra Time begins Watford 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

105' Sub, (WW) Rúben Vinagre replaces Jonny. 105'+3' First Half Extra Time ends, Watford 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2. 105'+2' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Adrian Mariappa. Goal! 104' Goal! Watford 3, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2. Gerard Deulofeu (Wfd) right footed shot from the right side o f the box to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Andre Gray. 102' Sub, (WW) Adama Traoré replaces João Moutinho. Booking 101' Etienne Capoue (Wfd) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 101' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wfd). 101' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 100' Attempt blocked. Abdoulaye Doucouré (Wfd) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 98' Sub, (Wfd) Adam Masina replaces José Holebas because of an injury. 97' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 95' Delay in match José Holebas (Wfd) because of an injury. 94' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Heurelho Gomes. 94' Attempt saved. Jonny (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez.

First Half Extra Time begins Watford 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

Full Time 90'+6'

Second Half ends, Watford 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.

Goal! 90'+4' Goal! Watford 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2. Troy Deeney (Wfd) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the top left corner. 90'+2' Penalty Watford. Troy Deeney draws a foul in the penalty area. 90'+2' Penalty conceded by Leander Dendoncker (WW) after a foul in the penalty area. 90'+1' Foul by Troy Deeney (Wfd). 90'+1' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 90' Foul by Troy Deeney (Wfd). 90' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 89' Sub, (WW) Ivan Cavaleiro replaces Diogo Jota. 88' Attempt missed. José Holebas (Wfd) left footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the left. 86' Sub, (WW) Ryan Bennett replaces Rúben Neves. 85' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wfd). 85' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 83' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Romain  Saïss. 83' Attempt blocked. José Holebas (Wfd) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Troy Deeney with a headed pass. 82' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Conor Coady. 81' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Jonny. Goal! 79' Goal! Watford 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2. Gerard Deulofeu (Wfd) right footed shot from the left side of the box to the top right corner.  77' Attempt blocked. Abdoulaye Doucouré (Wfd) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Troy Deeney. 72' Foul by Etienne Capoue (Wfd).

72' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 69' Craig Cathcart (Wfd) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 69' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 69' Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Wfd) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Kiko Femenía with a cross. 66' Sub, (Wfd) Gerard Deulofeu replaces Will Hughes. 65' Foul by Kiko Femenía (Wfd). 65' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick on the left  wing. 64' Offside, (Wfd) Roberto Pereyra tries a through ball, but Andre Gray is caught offside.

Goal! 62'

Goal! Watford 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Matt Doherty following a set piece situation.

Booking 61'José Holebas (Wfd) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 61' Foul by José Holebas (Wfd). 61' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 60' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Diogo Jota. 58' Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Wfd) left footed shot from the left side of the box is too high. Assisted by Roberto Pereyra. 57' Attempt missed. Troy Deeney (Wfd) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Roberto Pereyra following a set piece situation. 57' Kiko Femenía (Wfd) wins a free kick on the right wing. 57' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 55' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is close, but misses to the right from a direct free kick. Booking 54' Craig Cathcart (Wfd) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 54' Foul by Craig Cathcart (Wfd). 54' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 51' Kiko Femenía (Wfd) wins a free kick on the right wing. 51' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW).51' Attempt saved. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Diogo Jota. 50' Attempt missed. Abdoulaye Doucouré (Wfd) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Kiko Femenía with a cross. 48' Attempt saved. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Romain Saïss. 47' Foul by Roberto Pereyra (Wfd). 47' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Second Half begins Watford 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

Half Time 45'+3' First Half ends, Watford 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

45'+2' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Diogo Jota. 45'+1' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Conor Coady. 45'+1' Attempt blocked. Andre Gray (Wfd) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Troy Deeney with a headed pass. 41' Offside, (WW) Willy Boly tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 40' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Romain Saïss. 39' Attempt missed. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Willy Boly following a fast break.

Goal! 36'

Goal! Watford 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Matt Doherty (WW) header from very close range to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Diogo Jota with a cross following a corner.

35' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Heurelho Gomes. 35' Attempt saved. Leander Dendoncker (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Jonny. 33' Roberto Pereyra (Wfd) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 33' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 31' Attempt missed. Andre Gray (Wfd) right footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Troy Deeney with a cross. 26' Attempt missed. Troy Deeney (Wfd) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Booking 25' Rúben Neves (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 24' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 24' Roberto Pereyra (Wfd) wins a free kick on the left wing. 23' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 23' Foul by Will Hughes (Wfd). 18' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 18' Foul by Abdoulaye Doucouré (Wfd). 16' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 16' Will Hughes (Wfd) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 14' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 14' Craig Cathcart (Wfd) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 11' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 10' Delay in match Romain Saïss (WW) because of an injury. Booking 10' Romain Saïss (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 10' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 10' Roberto Pereyra (Wfd) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 9' Offside, (Wfd) Troy Deeney tries a through ball, but Andre Gray is caught  offside. 7' Attempt missed. Etienne Capoue (Wfd) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a set piece situation. 6' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 6' Will Hughes (Wfd) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 5' Attempt missed. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high from a direct free kick. 4' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 4' Foul by Adrian Mariappa (Wfd). 3' Corner, (Wfd) Conceded by Rúben Neves. 2' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 2' Craig Cathcart (Wfd) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 1' Attempt missed. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses the top right corner. Assisted by Diogo Jota. Kick Off

First Half begins.


TEAM NEWS

Watford pair Roberto Pereyra and Isaac Success will have fitness tests on respective hip and knee injuries ahead of the semi-final with Wolves.  Tom Cleverley will definitely be sidelined by a calf problem.

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has no fresh injury concerns for the trip to Wembley on Sunday. Keeper John Ruddy - who has started all of his side's FA Cup ties so far this season - will keep his place in the Wolves goal ahead of Rui Patricio.


MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@Guymowbray: All the indications are for a tight tie, with little to separate the Premier League's two next-best teams outside the 'big six'. One point - the difference between them, in Wolves' favour. One goal - again pointing to Wolves, with a goal difference of +1 to Watford's zero.  One minute - made the difference at Molineux in October, with Watford's goals in a 2-0 win scored just 58 seconds apart. One yellow card - Watford have totalled 62 league bookings to Wolves' 61, with even the number of fouls committed across the whole season incredibly close (358 Watford, 353 Wolves). One goal to split them then? Or maybe one missed penalty in a shoot-out?!*

*Watford have lost their last three, and Wolves their last four. Vive la difference!


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Watford head coach Javi Gracia: "I've never played a final as a coach. Semi-finals I played in Russia, but a final I've never played.  It will be the best achievement in this competition for sure. If I win it I don't know what I'll do.  Both teams are playing well with good results, in a good moment, and we have to show in this semi-final what we are able to do and if we deserve to go to the final."

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "Focus on the game, don't think about anything else and what it could mean or what could happen after. Make the game special. We have to play just like another game and make it special for that to team something. We know, everyone knows what it could mean. But we have to play it just like another game, focus on the actions and tasks and make it special for that to mean something."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

I think this one is going to be very tight. I would not be surprised if it goes to penalties - but I do think Wolves will edge it. Prediction: 1-1, with Wolves to win on penalties  


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head - Watford have won just one of the seven FA Cup meetings - 3-0 in the fifth round in February 1980. The Hornets have only lost one of their past five matches against Wolves in all competitions, winning two and drawing two. Watford's biggest FA Cup defeat was a 10-0 loss against Wolves in January 1912.

Watford have lost three of their past six matches in all competitions, compared to one defeat in their previous 11 (W6, D4).

The Hornets have lost three successive matches away from home.

Watford have lost their last four games at Wembley and have only won once in six visits to the ground. Only Heurelho Gomes and Will Hughes have played in all four Watford FA Cup matches this season.

Troy Deeney has been directly involved in nine goals in his last 13 FA Cup appearances, scoring five and assisting four.

Wolverhampton Wanderers have only lost two of their past 14 matches in all competitions, winning eight and drawing four. They are on a six-match winning run at Wembley Stadium. Raul Jimenez has scored in three rounds of the FA Cup this season, a record bettered only by the five of Newport County's Padraig Amond. Jimenez has been directly involved in 18 goals in the Premier League this season, scoring 12 and assisting six.  


And then there were four.

A competition that started with 736 teams in August has reached the semi-final stage, but just who will make it to the FA Cup final on 18 May?

Manchester City, who are chasing an unprecedented quadruple, take on Brighton & Hove Albion, the lowest ranked club remaining, on Saturday (17:30 BST) - live on BBC One.

The second semi-final is between Watford, runners-up in 1984, and Wolverhampton Wanderers, who have not appeared in the final since 1960, on Sunday (16:00).


Seventh Wembley heaven for sausage-inspiring Wolves?

Like Watford, Wolves are also enjoying a memorable campaign under Nuno Espirito Santo. The Portuguese is proving so popular in Wolverhampton that a local butcher has created a sausage in honour of the 45-year-old former Porto boss. "The Nuno banger is made with garlic and paprika, a classic Portuguese style," butcher Stuart Taylor told the Express & Star. "One man told me they were so tasty that Nuno didn't do them justice, but then again he wasn't much of a football fan."

This time five years ago Wolves were hosting Peterborough United in League One. Now they are eyeing a top-seven Premier League finish - as well as an FA Cup final appearance. Wolves have won on their past six visits to Wembley - including a 3-1 victory over Tottenham in the league on 29 December. Did you know? Wolves are on course to become the first club to win the FA Cup in three different centuries. The Black Country club are four-time winners - 1893, 1908, 1949 and 1960.


Video assistant referee system (VAR) replays will be displayed to fans during this season's FA Cup semi-finals at Wembley if a decision is overturned.  VAR's decision will be announced on the big screen before a "definitive video clip" is shown. It comes after criticism that decisions are sometimes unclear for fans inside stadiums. The Football Association said it would provide "clarity" and "transparency" for those in attendance. "The FA Cup has been at the forefront VAR testing process in England and this is the next step in its development," said Andy Ambler, the FA's director of professional game relations.Replays of incidents reviewed by VAR were shown on big screens at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. VAR has been used regularly in FA Cup ties over the past two seasons, making its debut in English football in Brighton's third-round win over Crystal Palace on 8 January, 2018. It will be in use for both semi-finals this weekend as well as the final on 18 May. Manchester City face Brighton on Saturday before Watford play Wolves on Sunday.


33 H Tue 2 Apr  19:45 Man Utd    

Wolves 2 Jota (25'), Smalling (77' og) Man Utd 1  McTominay (13'), Young (Dismissed at  57')  HT 1-1pic Tim Spiers

Manchester United missed the chance to move third in the Premier League as they threw away a lead, had a man sent off and lost at Wolves. (But got beaten by a better side).  Scott McTominay's low strike from 22 yards - his first goal for United - put them ahead after 13 minutes but the hosts equalised 12 minutes later as Diogo Jota coolly finished from a Raul Jimenez pass. The visitors had captain Ashley Young sent off in the 57th minute for two yellow card offences after he twice fouled Jota inside a five-minute spell. Wolves took advantage as they scored a scrappy second goal when David de Gea failed to collect the ball and it ricocheted off United defender Chris Smalling and into the net to give the hosts the win. The defeat was the first under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer since he was given the United manager's job on a full-time basis and left them fifth in the Premier League. United are level on points with fourth-placed Tottenham and two points behind Arsenal in third, but have now played a game more than both London clubs.

Wolves

11Rui Patrício 5Bennett 16Coady 15Boly 2Doherty 32Dendoncker 8Neves sub for Saïssat 84' 28João Moutinho 29Vinagre sub for Castro Ottoat 76'Booked at 90'  9Jiménez 18Jota sub for Cavaleiroat 73' Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 19Castro Otto 21Ruddy 27Saïss

37Traoré

Man Utd

1de Gea 18YoungBooked at 57'  12Smalling 2Lindelöf 20DalotBooked at 42'  sub for Pereiraat 84' 39McTominay 17Fred sub for Jonesat  5' 6Pogba  23ShawBooked at 38'  14Lingard 9Lukaku sub for Martialat 73' Substitutes 4Jones 8Mata 11Martial 15Pereira 16Rojo 22Romero 31Matic

Referee: Mike Dean Attendance: 31,302


Full Time Wolves Man Utd  pic Wolves Diogo scores equaliser

Possession  50%  50%

Shots        9    18

Shots on Tgt 2     4

Corners      3     5

Fouls        5    11

Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

Full Time 90'+6' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

90'+6' Offside, (WW) Ryan Bennett tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 90'+5' Offside, (MU) Jesse Lingard tries a through ball, but Paul Pogba is caught offside. 90'+4' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Leander Dendoncker. 90'+4' Attempt blocked. Chris Smalling , (MU) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Andreas Pereira. Booking 90'+4' Jonny

Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

Full Time 90'+6' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

90'+6' Offside, (WW) Ryan Bennett tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 90'+5' Offside, (MU) Jesse Lingard tries a through ball, but Paul Pogba is caught offside. 90'+4' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Leander Dendoncker. 90'+4' Attempt blocked. Chris Smalling , (MU) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Andreas Pereira. Booking 90'+4' Jonny (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 90'+4' Foul by Jonny (WW). 90'+4' Andreas Pereira , (MU) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 90'+3' Ivan Cavaleiro (WW) hits the bar with a left footed shot from the centre of the box. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez following a fast break. 90'+2' Offside, (WW) Romain Saïss tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 90' Corner, (WW) Conceded by David de Gea. 89' Attempt missed. Paul Pogba , (MU) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Anthony Martial.   84'sub, (MU) Andreas Pereira replaces Diogo Dalot.  84' sub, (WW) Romain Saïss replaces Rúben Neves. 78' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Rui Patrício. 78' Attempt blocked. Scott McTominay , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Anthony Martial.

Goal! 77' Own Goal by Chris Smalling, (MU) Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

76' sub, (WW) Jonny replaces Rúben Vinagre.  73' sub, (MU) Anthony Martial replaces Romelu Lukaku.   73' sub, (WW) Ivan Cavaleiro replaces Diogo Jota. 72' Attempt missed. Scott McTominay , (MU) header from very close range is too high. Assisted by Diogo Dalot with a cross following a corner. 72' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Ryan Bennett. 72' Attempt blocked. Scott McTominay , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jesse Lingard. 70' Attempt blocked. Luke Shaw , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 70' Attempt missed. Phil Jones , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a corner. 69' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Rúben Vinagre.  65' sub, (MU) Phil Jones replaces Fred. 64' Attempt blocked. Luke Shaw , (MU) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Paul Pogba. 63' Victor Lindelöf , (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 63' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 62' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Chris Smalling. 59' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 57' Delay in match Diogo Jota (WW) because of an injury.

Dismissal 57' Second yellow card to Ashley Young , (MU) for a bad foul.  57' Foul by Ashley Young , (MU). 57' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 56' Offside, (WW) Diogo Jota tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 55' Attempt saved. Scott McTominay , (MU) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Paul Pogba with a headed  pass.  53' Offside, (WW) Conor Coady tries a through ball, but Rúben Vinagre is caught offside. Booking 52' Ashley Young , (MU) is shown the yellow card. 52' Foul by Ashley Young , (MU). 52' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 49' Attempt missed. Diogo Dalot , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a set piece situation. 49' Attempt blocked. Jesse Lingard , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Romelu Lukaku. 48' Paul Pogba , (MU) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 48' Foul by Rúben Vinagre (WW). 47' Chris Smalling , (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 47' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 47' Attempt missed. Fred , (MU) left footed shot from more than 35 yards is close, but misses the top left corner. Assisted by Paul Pogba. Second Half

Second Half begins Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Manchester United 1.

Half Time

          Wolves Man Utd

Possession  50%  50%

Shots        7    7

Shots on Tgt 2    3

Corners      1    1

Fouls        1    9


45'+2' First Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Manchester United 1.

45'+1' Attempt missed. Romelu Lukaku , (MU) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the left. 43' Attempt saved. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Booking 42' Diogo Dalot , (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 42' Rúben Vinagre (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 42' Foul by Diogo Dalot , (MU). 39' Attempt missed. Matt Doherty (WW) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a set piece situation. Booking 38' Luke Shaw , (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 38' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 38' Foul by Luke Shaw , (MU). 37' Foul by Ryan Bennett (WW). 37' Scott McTominay , (MU) wins a free kick on the left wing. 35' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 35' Foul by Ashley Young , (MU). 31' Attempt missed. Leander Dendoncker (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Matt Doherty. 30' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. 29' Foul by Chris Smalling , (MU). 29' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Goal! 25' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Manchester United 1. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez with a through ball.

24' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the right side of the box is too high. Assisted by Willy Boly following a set piece situation. 24' Foul by Fred , (MU). 24' Willy Boly (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 23' Offside, (MU) Chris Smalling tries a through ball, but Diogo Dalot is caught offside. 20' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Chris Smalling. 19' Foul by Jesse Lingard , (MU). 19' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 18' Attempt blocked. Ashley Young , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Paul Pogba. 18' Offside, (MU) Ashley Young tries a through ball, but Scott McTominay is caught offside. 17' Attempt saved. Jesse Lingard , (MU) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Romelu Lukaku. 17' Attempt blocked. Luke Shaw , (MU) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Paul Pogba. 16' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 16' Foul by Scott McTominay , (MU). 15' Offside, (MU) David de Gea tries a through ball, but Paul Pogba is caught offside. Goal! 13' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Manchester United 1. Scott McTominay , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Fred. 10' Offside, (MU) Paul Pogba tries a through ball, but Ashley Young is caught offside. 9' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Conor Coady. 9' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Rúben Neves. 9' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 9' Foul by Scott McTominay , (MU). 5' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 5' Foul by Paul Pogba , (MU). 5' Attempt saved. Romelu Lukaku , (MU) header from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Diogo Dalot with a cross. 1' Attempt missed. Jesse Lingard , (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

Kick Off


First Half begins.


Lineups are announced and players are warming up.


TEAM NEWS

Wolves central defender Ryan Bennett is available after a two-match suspension.  Raul Jimenez and Matt Doherty are both expected to start, having featured as substitutes at the weekend, but several other regulars may be rested ahead of Sunday's FA Cup semi-final. Manchester United's Anthony Martial has shaken off the knock he picked up on Saturday, while Romelu Lukaku and Victor Lindelof are both available. Alexis Sanchez, Antonio Valencia, Eric Bailly and Matteo Darmian remain out.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "That was a big moment [last month's FA Cup win over United], but Tuesday is totally different. We competed well. We were very organised and we have to do it again because it will require a lot from us. Every time we face a team like Manchester United we have to be ready to compete. We know how good they are - fantastic players, fantastic manager, all the history of a huge club, but we are ready and we want to compete well in Molineux"."

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: "Last time [in the FA Cup] we didn't play well enough against them, didn't have enough tempo. It was a different type of game for us, we had the ball for 70% of the time but sometimes possession doesn't mean you're going to create chances and score goals."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION

I think Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side will go for it, while I am not sure the Wolves players will be looking at this game in the same way. I don't care who you are, if you are playing in an FA Cup semi-final at the weekend, you are not going to be flying into 50-50 challenges and running the risk of getting hurt. That's the way it is - everyone wants to play at Wembley - and that is one of the reasons United will have the edge.

Prediction: 0-2 Lawro's prediction

MATCH FACTS Head-to-head

Wolves, who knocked Manchester United out of the FA Cup last month, are looking to beat the Red Devils twice in the same season for the first time since 1979-80.

Wolves have alternated between victory and defeat in the four previous Premier League meetings at Molineux, most recently losing 5-0 in March 2012.

September's reverse fixture ended in a 1-1 draw with Wolves' Joao Moutinho cancelling out Fred's opener.

Wolverhampton Wanderers have won just one of their last six league matches (D3, L2). They are unbeaten in seven home games in all competitions, winning six of them. Wolves have earned 10 points against the established top six, more than any of the other teams outside that group (W2, D4, L3). They have scored a league-high four own-goals - three by Conor Coady and other from Matt Doherty. Raul Jimenez and Diogo Jota have provided 11 of Wolves' last 15 home league goals, scoring six and five respectively. Jota has contributed five goals and three assists in his last six league games at Molineux.

Manchester United have earned more Premier League points than any other side since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho. Their tally of 35 is one more than Liverpool over the same period. Solskjaer's side have lost their last two away matches in all competitions, having previously won nine successive games on their travels in league and cup. They have won only one of their nine league fixtures against sides currently in the top seven this term (D4, L4). The last time United failed to beat a promoted side either home or away in a Premier League campaign was in 2002-03, when they drew at home and lost away to Manchester City.

Paul Pogba has been directly involved in five of United's last eight league goals, scoring two and setting up three. Since his United debut in February 2016, Marcus Rashford has scored 45 goals for the club in all competitions, more than any other player.


32 A Sat 30 Mar 15:00 Burnley    


31 Burnley 2 Coady (2' og), McNeil (77') Wolves 0 Ht 1-0

 

1 shot on target from Burnley and two goals.  Pic Mark Feehan

Burnley boosted their survival hopes by beating Wolves to end a run of four straight defeats and move five points clear of the Premier League relegation zone. The Clarets led inside 90 seconds when Chris Wood's shot from a tight angle hit the post before going in off Wolves captain Conor Coady. A hard-fought match produced few clear-cut chances and could have swung in the direction of either side. But a moment of brilliance from Burnley teenager Dwight McNeil sealed a potentially crucial win for the home side at a jubilant Turf Moor. McNeil, 19, maintained his composure in the Wolves box - in a rare opportunity for the hosts in the second half - to precisely drill into the bottom-right corner. That sparked relieved celebrations among the home contingent as Clarets manager Sean Dyche marked his 300th game in management with three points which could be vital at the end of the campaign. "That's my best moment in a Burnley shirt - I hope I get plenty more like it," said McNeil, who has scored three goals in his breakthrough season.


Burnley

1Heaton 26Bardsley 5Tarkowski 6Mee 3Taylor 13Hendrick 18Westwood 4Cork 31McNeilBooked at 67' sub for Berg Gudmundssonat 87' 10Barnes 11Wood Substitutes 2Lowton 7Berg Gudmundsson 12Brady 14Gibson 20Hart 23Ward 27Vydra

Wolves

11Rui Patrício  27Saïss 16Coady 15Boly 37Traoré sub for Hélder Costaat 72' 32Dendoncker sub for Dohertyat 59' 8NevesBooked at 90' 28João Moutinho 19Castro Otto 7Cavaleiro sub for Jiménezat 59' 18Jota Substitutes 2Doherty 9Jiménez 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 21Ruddy 29Vinagre 49Kilman

Referee: Chris Kavanagh Attendance: 20,990

FT

         Burnley Wolves

Possession 37%   63%

Shots       5     8

Shots on Tgt 1    1

Corners     1     5

Fouls      12    10

Match ends, Burnley 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. Pic Tim Spiers

Full Time 90'+4' Second Half ends, Burnley 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. Booking 90'+3' Rúben Neves (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 90'+3' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 90'+3' Charlie Taylor (B) wins a free kick on the left wing. 90'+2' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Diogo Jota with a cross. 90'+2' Offside, (B) Tom Heaton tries a through ball, but Chris Wood is caught offside. 90'+1' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 90'+1' James Tarkowski (B) wins a free kick in the defensive half.   87' Sub, (B) Johann Gudmundsson replaces Dwight McNeil. 85' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Phil Bardsley. 84' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 84' Foul by James Tarkowski (B). 83' Attempt missed. Jack Cork (B) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high following a set piece situation. 82' Attempt blocked. Ashley Barnes (B) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jack Cork. 82' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 82' Ashley Barnes (B) wins a free kick on the right wing. 80' Attempt missed. Matt Doherty (WW) header from very close range is too high. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 79' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Charlie Taylor. Goal! 77' Goal! Burnley 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. Dwight McNeil (B) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by James Tarkowski with a headed pass. 74' Attempt saved. Jonny (WW) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 72' Sub, (WW) Hélder Costa replaces Adama Traoré. 72' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 72' Foul by Ashley Westwood (B). 70' Corner, (B) Conceded by Willy Boly. 69' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 69' Ashley Barnes (B) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 69' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho. Booking 67' Dwight McNeil (B) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul

67' Matt Doherty (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half.67' Foul by Dwight McNeil (B). 64' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 64' Foul by Jeff Hendrick (B). 59' Romain Saïss (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 59' Foul by Ashley Barnes (B). 59' Sub, (WW) Raúl Jiménez replaces Ivan Cavaleiro. 59' Sub, (WW) Matt Doherty replaces Leander Dendoncker. 56' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. 49' Attempt missed. Ivan Cavaleiro (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Leander Dendoncker. Second Half

Second Half begins Burnley 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.


HT

          Burnley WolvesOG by Conor (Getty_

Possession  44%    56%

Shots        2      3

Shots on Tgt 0      0

Corners      0      3

Fouls        7      6


45'+5'

First Half ends, Burnley 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.

45'+5' Hand ball by Chris Wood (B). 45'+2' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 45' Delay in match Leander Dendoncker (WW) because of an injury. 44' Rui Patrício (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 44' Foul by James Tarkowski (B). 43' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 43' Phil Bardsley (B) wins a free kick on the right wing. 40' Offside, (WW) Conor Coady tries a through ball, but Ivan Cavaleiro is caught offside. 38' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Dwight McNeil. 37' Romain Saïss (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 37' Foul by Ashley Barnes (B). 29' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 29' Ashley Westwood (B) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 27' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 27' Foul by Ben Mee (B). 26' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from  outside the box misses to the right. 23' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 23' Foul by Ashley Barnes (B). 23' Foul by Willy Boly (WW). 23' James Tarkowski (B) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 22' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Ashley Barnes. 22' Attempt blocked. Jonny (WW) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. 21' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Dwight McNeil. 20' Attempt missed. Phil Bardsley (B) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a set piece situation. 19' Foul by Ivan Cavaleiro (WW). 19' Ashley Barnes (B) wins a free kick on the left wing. 17' Jonny (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 17' Foul by Ashley Westwood (B). 14' Foul by Leander Dendoncker (WW). 14' Ashley Westwood (B) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 12' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 11' Delay in match Jack Cork (B) because of an injury. 8' Offside, (WW) Rúben Neves tries a through ball, but Adama Traoré is caught offside. 7' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 7' Foul by Jeff Hendrick (B). Goal! 2' Own Goal by Conor Coady, (WW) Burnley 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0. 2' Chris Wood (B) hits the left post with a left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box. Assisted by Dwight McNeil following a set piece situation. 1' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 1' Chris Wood (B) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Kick Off First Half begins.


TEAM NEWS

Burnley's Johann Berg Gudmundsson is a fitness doubt after suffering a calf injury while playing for Iceland.  The club's other international players all returned unscathed, leaving Steven Defour and Aaron Lennon as their only certain absentees.  Wolves will be without defender Ryan Bennett, who serves the final game of a two-match suspension, so Romain Saiss will once again deputise.  Bennett is the only player unavailable to head coach Nuno Espirito Santo.  

Burnley post £36.6m record profit


MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@Wilsonfooty: Sean Dyche's 300th match as Burnley manager sees him attempting to end a run of four consecutive defeats which has plunged the Clarets right back into relegation danger - just as it seemed an eight-game unbeaten sequence had pulled them to relative safety. The 18 points they earned in that purple patch from December to February may yet prove key - but Cardiff's visit to Turf Moor on 13 April will be underlined in red in Dyche's diary.  Wolves are hoping they might qualify for the Europa League by virtue of either winning the FA Cup or by finishing seventh and having Manchester City lift the Cup.  Wolves' season has been nothing short of spectacular; they are on course to finish higher than any newly-promoted team in the top flight since Sunderland in 2000.


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Burnley manager Sean Dyche: "It's easy to forget we only had 12 points after 19 games. We've now got 30, so that's a pretty healthy return. Now we've got to continue to build on that.  "Since Christmas the actual form has been good. The last run has been tough, obviously. But if you mix that altogether, you'd certainly take the return in points. But we've got to get more."  

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "Burnley are a very good team at home: physical, aggressive, well organised. I expect a tough game between two teams who compete well.  I can only focus on myself and the players, the things we want to do. But we realise how difficult it is going to be. We have to be switched on."


LAWRO'S PREDICTION

I just wonder what the Wolves team will look like because they may have next weekend's FA Cup semi-final at Wembley on their minds. They play again in the league before then, against Manchester United on Tuesday, so Nuno Espirito Santo is perhaps more likely to rest players in that game, but I am still going to go with a Burnley win.  Prediction: 2-1



MATCH FACTS -Head-to-head

Burnley's 1-0 loss at Molineux in September's reverse fixture ended a four-match unbeaten run against Wolves in all competitions.

Wolves have won seven successive top-flight meetings, including all three in the Premier League.

Burnley are without a top-flight home victory against Wolves since 1963, losing five of the subsequent nine games.  Burnley ave equalled the Premier League club record of four straight defeats, conceding 11 goals in the process. They could lose five consecutive top-flight fixtures for the first time since December 1975 to January 1976. The Clarets have conceded at least once in each of their past eight matches. Burnley have let in 10 goals in the 90th minute or later this season, which is a joint Premier League record. They have conceded 14 goals from outside the penalty area in 2018-19, more than any other side. Sean Dyche's side are 16 points down on this stage of last season, when they were seventh after 31 games. Dwight McNeil has been involved in six league goals - scoring two and setting up four - the second-highest figure for a teenager this season behind Fulham's Ryan Sessegnon (seven).

Wolverhampton Wanderers have won four and lost only one of their last eight league games.  Three of their past five league matches have ended in 1-1 draws. Victory would ensure they became the first promoted team to reach 47 points since Norwich and Swansea both finished with that tally in 2011-12. They have conceded in 11 successive away league fixtures. Raul Jimenez has scored six of Wolves' last 10 league goals, with Diogo Jota assisting three of them. Jimenez has contributed to 18 of Wolves' 38 league goals: 12 goals, six assists.


31 H Sat 16 Mar  15:00 Arsenal  match to be rescheduled to Tues 23/Wed 24 April

Report

 

FAC Quarter Final 15-18 March H Manchester Utd Live on BBC1

FA Cup Quarter Final: Wolves 2 Jiminez 70', Jota 76' Man Utd 1 Rashfond 95'


Wolverhampton Wanderers produced an outstanding second-half performance to overpower Manchester United and reach their first FA Cup semi-final for 21 years on an atmospheric night at Molineux.  Nuno Espirito Santo's side, in their first quarter-final since 2003, fully deserved their victory as United produced their worst performance under the interim management of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. United goalkeeper Sergio Romero, in for David de Gea, had kept United level with brilliant saves from Diogo Jota and Raul Jimenez either side of the interval, before the Mexican striker swivelled in the area to finally give Wolves the reward their domination merited with 20 minutes remaining.  Wolves were rampant and it was no surprise when the dangerous Jota doubled their lead six minutes later, shrugging off United's Luke Shaw on the break before shooting low past the exposed Romero. United defender Victor Lindelof was shown a red card by referee Martin Atkinson for a touchline challenge on Jota, but it was downgraded it to yellow after a VAR review and, even though Marcus Rashford pulled one back in stoppage time, Wolves were worthy winners.

The celebrations on and off the pitch at Molineux when the final whistle sounded demonstrated what this win means to Wolves. Their resurgence under Nuno was exemplified by how they were simply too powerful, too energetic and too inventive for United as Solskjaer suffered his second successive defeat.  Wolves have real quality running through the side with the class and experience of Ruben Neves and Joao Moutinho in midfield augmented by the movement, pace and threat of Jota and Jimenez.  They have the backbone of captain Conor Coady and Willy Boly - and the bottom line was they were simply better than United in all areas of the pitch.  Now they head to Wembley and, make no mistake, they have the quality and confidence to threaten any team left in the FA Cup.


Manchester United get what they deserve - Solskjaer and United have deservedly been showered in praise for their dramatic rejuvenation since Jose Mourinho was sacked in December, the highlight of which was the stunning Champions League turnaround against Paris St-Germain in France earlier this month. This, though, was a performance that rolled back the months to the Mourinho era and was arguably worse than some of the displays turned in under the Portuguese. Paul Pogba was restored as captain as another Mourinho move was wiped away but he was poor - although he was not alone there.  United barely threatened Wolves keeper John Ruddy and, slowly but surely, their performance crumbled to almost shambolic levels in the second half as Wolves were all over them and ran them ragged. Solskjaer will hope it is just a temporary slump but the fight is now right on for the top four and Champions League opponents Barcelona will not lose a wink of sleep after watching United here.

Man of the match - Raul Jimenez (Wolves)

Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo, speaking to BBC Sport: "I'm very proud of the players. We had composure, shape, good running. Very well done to the boys and it was a fantastic atmosphere. It means a lot because we know how big Wolves were in the 1950s and 1960s and there are people in the stadium who have memories of that. To try to achieve the same is much, much harder now but we will try step by step. We will respect everybody in the semi-finals."

'A big step backwards' - reaction - Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, speaking to BBC Sport: "We started too slowly and played into their hands. Our possession wasn't bright enough and quick enough, so it's disappointing. I didn't think we had enough quality in the last third, enough combination play. We had decent dominance with the ball in the first half but that doesn't help if you give the ball away and they can counter. This was a big step backwards, mainly because of the quality of the possession and the passing."


Solskjaer's first back-to-back defeats - stats

Wolves have reached their 15th FA Cup semi-final and their first since 1997-98. They have been eliminated in each of their last four semi-final appearances. United have lost back-to-back games for the first time under Solskjaer, last doing so in December 2018 in Mourinho's last two matches in charge. Wolves have won three consecutive FA Cup games for the first time since February 2003. Wolves have won six of their last seven home matches across all competitions (D1), as many as their previous 16 before this (W6 D5 L5). United have lost an FA Cup clash with Wolves for the first time since January 1973, and for the first time in their four such meetings at the quarter-final stage. Raul Jimenez has scored 15 goals in all competitions this season, at least eight more than any other Wolves player.

What's next? Manchester United host Watford in the Premier League on Saturday, 30 March at 15:00 GMT, while Wolves are away at Burnley at the same time.


Wolves

21Ruddy 27Saïss 16Coady booked  86mins 15Boly booked  41mins 2Doherty 32Dendoncker 8Neves booked  43mins 28João Moutinho 19Castro Otto 9Jiménez sub for Hélder Costaat 90+5'  18Jota sub for Traoréat 87'  Substitutes 5Bennett 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 29Vinagre 31Norris 37Traoré

Man Utd

22Romero 20Dalot booked  90mins  12Smalling  2Lindelöf booked  84mins  23Shaw 21Herrera booked  62mins sub for Pereiraat 71'  31Matic booked  45mins sub for Mataat 86'  6Pogba 14Lingard sub for McTominayat 86'  10Rashford booked  52mins 11Martial Substitutes 1De Gea 4Jones 8Mata 15Pereira 16Rojo 17Fred 39McTominay

Referee: Martin Atkinson Attendance: 31,004


FT Stats Wolves Man Utd

Possession 39%  61%

Shots      17   11

Shots on Tgt 7   2

Corners    10    6

Fouls      12    5


Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

Full Time 90'+6' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1.

Goal! 90'+5' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 1. Marcus Rashford (MU) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Luke Shaw.  90'+5' Sub, (WW) Hélder Costa replaces Raúl Jiménez. Booking 90'+4' Diogo Dalot (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.  90'+4' Foul by Diogo Dalot (MU).  90'+4' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 90'+2' Anthony Martial (MU) wins a free kick on the left wing. 90'+2' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 90'+1' Attempt missed. Adama Traoré (WW) left footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right. 88' Scott McTominay (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 88' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW).  87' Sub, (WW) Adama Traoré replaces Diogo Jota.  86' Sub, (MU) Scott McTominay replaces Jesse Lingard.  86' Sub, (MU) Juan Mata replaces Nemanja Matic. Booking 86' Conor Coady (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 86' Marcus Rashford (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 86' Foul by Conor Coady (WW). 85' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Luke Shaw. 84' Delay over. They are ready to continue. Booking 84' Victor Lindelöf (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 84' VAR: Red Card. Referee decision on field cancelled. 82' Delay in match (MU). Video Review. 81' Foul by Victor Lindelöf (MU). 81' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 80' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho following a corner. 79' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Chris Smalling. Goal!

76' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Manchester United 0. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Rúben Neves following a fast break.

76' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Willy Boly. 75' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Matt Doherty. 75' Paul Pogba (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 75' Foul by Leander Dendoncker (WW). 74' Attempt missed. Andreas Pereira (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Jesse Lingard. 73' Attempt blocked. Andreas Pereira (MU) right footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the left is blocked. 72' Anthony Martial (MU) wins a free kick on the left wing. 72' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW).  71' Sub, (MU) Andreas Pereira replaces Ander Herrera. Goal!

70' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Manchester United 0. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner.

68' Attempt blocked. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Diogo Jota. 67' Foul by Chris Smalling (MU). 67' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 65' Marcus Rashford (MU) wins a free kick on the left wing. 65' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 64' Jesse Lingard (MU) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 64' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). Booking 62' Ander Herrera (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 62' Foul by Ander Herrera (Manchester  United). 62' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 60' Attempt blocked. Ander Herrera (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 58' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Sergio Romero. 58' Attempt saved. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. 57' Attempt blocked. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho. 54' Paul Pogba (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 54' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 54' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Sergio Romero. 53' Attempt saved. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 53' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Paul Pogba. Booking 52' Marcus Rashford (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 52' Foul by Marcus Rashford (MU).

52' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 50' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Jonny. 49' Offside, (WW) John Ruddy tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 49' Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from more than 35 yards is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho. 48' Attempt blocked. Jesse Lingard (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Paul Pogba. 46' Attempt missed. Marcus Rashford (MU) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Diogo Dalot. Second Half

Second Half begins Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Manchester United 0.

Half Time

45'+2' First Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0, Manchester United 0.

45'+2' Attempt blocked. Matt Doherty (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Booking 45'+1' Nemanja Matic (MU) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 45'+1' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Ander Herrera. 45'+1' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho.  44' Attempt missed. Nemanja Matic (MU) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Diogo Dalot. Booking 43' Rúben Neves (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 43' Paul Pogba (MU) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 43' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). 42' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Rúben Neves with a through ball. 42' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Romain Saïss. Booking 41' Willy Boly (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.  41'Paul Pogba (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 41' Foul by Willy Boly (WW). 40' Attempt blocked. Willy Boly (WW) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross. 40' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Victor Lindelöf. 38' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Jonny. 38' Attempt blocked. Diogo Dalot (MU) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. 36' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Paul Pogba. 33' Attempt missed. Marcus Rashford (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right following a corner.  33' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Jonny. 30' Attempt saved. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Matt Doherty with a cross. 28' Attempt saved. Rúben Neves (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by João Moutinho. 28' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Luke Shaw. 25' Corner, (MU) Conceded by Conor Coady. 17' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Victor Lindelöf. 16' Attempt blocked. João Moutinho (WW) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. 13' Attempt saved. Marcus Rashford (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Nemanja Matic. 10' Attempt missed. Paul Pogba (MU) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Marcus Rashford. 4' Jesse Lingard (MU) wins a free kick on the right wing. 4' Foul by Conor Coady (WW). 3' Luke Shaw (MU) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 3' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). Kick Off

First Half begins.



TEAM NEWS

Wolves centre-back Ryan Bennett is available, despite currently serving a two-match Premier League ban, and could replace Romain Saiss.  Head coach Nuno Espirito Santo has no fresh injury concerns.

Manchester United's in-form forward Romelu Lukaku is a doubt because of a sore foot. Ashley Young is suspended but Phil Jones is fit after illness, while Jesse Lingard and Ander Herrera have returned to training and could be involved.

What to look out for in the FA quarter-finals this weekend Jota: Wolves' progress vindicates move despite criticism

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@Guymowbray: Top seven of the Premier League, last eight of the FA Cup - it's not the sort of season that sides coming up into the top flight generally experience.  Wolves, though, aren't your normal newly-promoted club, and those on the inside are presumably merely enjoying 'progress as planned'.  Nuno Espirito Santo will have a plan to beat Manchester United too, having been unlucky not to get the better of his old boss Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford in September. From Mourinho to the surprise of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, United's season has been anything but 'as planned' and yet could end incredibly well. Two in-form teams should give us great entertainment, and Molineux will be rocking. One for all to enjoy, Jose included.


VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "It is the biggest game for the club for some time, we are aware of that. There is a lot of hard work ahead to repeat what happened in the 1940s, 50s and 60s. It was easier back then."

Manchester United caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Wolves: "Last season you were impressed with them to go through the Championship as they did convincingly. They had a clear plan - didn't get Championship players in, [but] players above the Championship level - and you can see that now, in seventh, they trust their own way of playing. They defended fantastically well against Chelsea but at home they take the game to the opponent with the great passing ability in the team."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION

United lost their first league game under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer last week but, with the chances they had, they should have beaten Arsenal. Solskjaer's side actually played really well, and if they can repeat that performance then it should put them in the semi-finals. Prediction: 0-2


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head This is the 100th meeting between the sides in all competitions. United, then known as Newton Heath, won the first game 10-1 in a home league game in October 1892. United have won four of the eight previous FA Cup meetings, with Wolves winning twice. This is the fourth quarter-final match between the sides. United won 5-3 at Molineux in 1965 and 3-2 away in 1976, after the original tie at Old Trafford had ended 1-1.

Wolverhampton Wanderers - The most recent of Wolves' four FA Cup wins was in 1960 - United had lifted the trophy twice at that point. This is their first FA Cup quarter-final since 2003, when they lost 2-0 away to Southampton. Wolves' last quarter-final triumph came at Leeds in 1997-98, Don Goodman with the only goal.

Matt Doherty has been involved in five FA Cup goals this season (three goals and two assists), more than any other player among the teams left in the competition.

Manchester United have won the FA Cup 12 times, just one fewer than record holders Arsenal. United are appearing in their fifth successive FA Cup quarter-final. However, they are looking to reach consecutive semi-finals for the first time since 2003-04 and 2004-05. They have won 17 and lost just two of their last 20 FA Cup games dating back to January 2015. United's seven FA Cup goals this season have all been scored by different players: Juan Mata, Romelu Lukaku, Alexis Sanchez, Jesse Lingard, Anthony Martial, Ander Herrera and Paul Pogba. Defeat at Arsenal last weekend ended their run of nine successive away wins in all competitions - they also failed to score for the first time in 22 away games this season. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has won all four FA Cup away ties as a manager: two with Cardiff in 2013-14 and two this season with United.


FA Cup quarter-final predictions

                       Result Lawro Danny

SATURDAY   

Watford v Palace x-x 2-1 2-3

Swansea v Man City x-x 0-2 0-4

Wolves v Man Utd x-x 0-2 1-2

SUNDAY   

Millwall v Brighton x-x 1-1* 0-2


30 A Sun 10  Mar 14:05 Chelsea  Live on Sky D 1-1

30 Chelsea 1 E Hazard (90'+2) Wolves 1 Jiménez (56')

HT 0-0

Eden Hazard scored a stoppage-time equaliser to rescue a point for Chelsea against Wolves at Stamford Bridge.  Hazard curled into the bottom corner in the second minute of added-time to deny Wanderers a memorable victory and ensure Chelsea remain unbeaten in the Premier League since their 6-0 thrashing at Manchester City last month. Maurizio Sarri's future at the club had been brought into question following that defeat, but this point keeps the Blues well in contention for a top four place. Raul Jimenez finished off a swift counter-attacking move to put Wanderers ahead with their only shot on target nine minutes into the second half. That looked to be enough, particularly when substitute Willian saw his curling effort well saved by Rui Patricio late on, but Hazard struck to salvage a draw with his 16th goal of the season. Despite only managing two attempts on goal all game, Wolves may feel aggrieved at only securing a point having defended diligently, restricting Chelsea to half-chances and efforts from distance. Chelsea only had one shot on target during the first half, an effort from Gonzalo Higuain from a tight angle that was comfortably pushed behind by Patricio. Maurizio Sarri's side improved after going behind, with Pedro having a shot tipped over before Higuain failed to convert when the ball flashed across the box following a corner. It was hard to see Chelsea scoring as the game entered added time but Hazard showed neat skill to turn away from Ruben Neves and finally beat Patricio from 18 yards. Chelsea were looking to maintain momentum after back-to-back wins in the Premier League had eased some of the pressure that had been growing on Sarri after his side's thrashing at Etihad Stadium last month. Another loss here may well have put his position under scrutiny once more, but Hazard's late intervention makes it three league games without defeat and seven points from nine since that defeat to the champions, though they have exited the FA Cup and lost the Carabao Cup final on penalties during that timeframe. After making a number of changes for Thursday's Europa League last-16 first leg win over Dynamo Kiev, Sarri restored many of his key players to the starting line-up, including Hazard and N'Golo Kante. However, they were subdued for much of the game, particularly during the first half where they managed just one shot on target. Chelsea enjoyed 75% possession but precious little of it was in dangerous areas, with Wolves content to sit back and look to hit on the counter. Half-hearted penalty claims were turned down when Hazard's corner hit Jimenez on the arm as he attempted to clear. Romain Saiss then had to be alert to clear the ball away from Hazard after Willy Boly's headed clearance inadvertently landed in his path. Jimenez's goal after the break jolted Chelsea into action, with Pedro and Higuain going close, but it took a dramatic intervention from top-scorer Hazard to finally breach the Wolves backline. The point was not enough to move Chelsea back into the Champions League qualification places, had they won they would have moved fourth, two points behind Tottenham and still with a game in hand. Instead, they remain sixth, locked in a tight battle with Spurs, Arsenal and Manchester United for the final two spots in the top four. They do, though, also have the chance to qualify for next season's Champions League by winning the Europa League and take a 3-0 lead into Thursday's second leg of their last 16 clash with Dynamo Kiev.

Wolves continue to impress (pic John Bray)

They may have only managed one shot on target, but this was far from a smash-and-grab by Wolves. The Black Country club have won more points against the 'big six' sides than any other club outside that group and have also taken points away at Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham this season. That success has been achieved by being well organised in defence but also having a clear gameplan to counter-attack with speed. That plan worked to perfection when, having restricted Chelsea to half-chances, Wolves struck with their first shot at goal 11 minutes into the second half with a move that started in their own penalty area. Willy Boly's clearance found Joao Moutinho, who immediately found the onrushing Jimenez. The Mexican striker strode forward and exchanged passes with Jota, before forcing the ball beyond Kepa Arrizabalaga via a deflection off Cesar Azpilicueta. Wolves were forced deeper as Chelsea pushed for an equaliser but held firm, with captain Conor Coady marshalling the back three. Leander Dendoncker also proved to be an efficient screen in front of the defence, with no Wolves player making more tackles or interceptions than the Belgian. The fact Wolves, promoted from the Championship last season, are disappointed to only take a point is testament to the progress they have made this season. But they can take plenty of encouragement from this performance as they prepare for their FA Cup quarter-final against Manchester United next weekend.  Man of the match - Leander Dendoncker (Wolves)

Wolves still unbeaten in London - the stats

After a five game winning run against promoted sides at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea have now failed to win two of their last four such home matches in the Premier League (P4 W2 D2 L0).  Wolves are now unbeaten in six league games in London this season (W3 D3), their longest such run in the capital in the top-flight since November 1974 (11 games). Of non-big six sides, Wolves have picked up at least two more points against big-six opposition than any other Premier League team this season (P9 W2 D4 L3 - 10 points). Eden Hazard's equaliser was his 50th Premier League goal at Stamford Bridge for Chelsea, becoming the third player to do so for the club in the competition after Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba. Only Cesc Fabregas (6) has assisted more Premier League goals for Chelsea's Eden Hazard than Willian (5). No player has scored more Premier League goals within a single season for Wolves than current striker Raul Jiménez (12 - also Steven Fletcher in 2011-12). Wolves duo Diogo Jota (one goal, two assists) and Raul Jiménez (two goals, one assist) have directly combined for each of their sides last three Premier League goals.

TEAMS

Chelsea

1Arrizabalaga 28Azpilicueta 2Rüdiger booked 78' 30David Luiz 33Emerson 7Kanté 5Jorginho sub for Willianat 72' 17Kovacic sub for Loftus-Cheekat 56' 11Pedro sub for Hudson-Odoiat 61' 9Higuaín 10E Hazard Substitutes 8Barkley 12Loftus-Cheek 13Caballero 18Giroud 20Hudson-Odoi 22Willian 27Christensen

Wolves

11Rui Patrício 27Saïss booked 66' 16Coady 15Boly booked 75' 2Doherty booked 37' 32Dendoncker 8Neves 28João Moutinho 19Castro Otto 9Jiménez sub for Traoréat 89' 18Jota booked 80' sub for Gibbs-Whiteat 82' Substitutes 7Cavaleiro 10Hélder Costa 17Gibbs-White 21Ruddy 29Vinagre 37Traoré 49Kilman

Referee: Michael Oliver Attendance: 40,692


         Chelsea  Wolves

Possession  76%   24%

Shots       22     1

Shots on Tgt 6     1

Corners     13     0

Fouls        8    14


Match ends, Chelsea 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

Full Time 90'+5' Second Half ends, Chelsea 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

90'+4' Attempt missed. Adama Traoré (WW) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by João Moutinho following a set piece situation. 90'+4' Foul by N'Golo Kanté (CFC). 90'+4' Adama Traoré (WW) wins a free kick on the right wing. 90'+3'Offside, (WW) Rúben Neves tries a through ball, but Morgan Gibbs-White is caught offside. 90'+3' Attempt missed. Antonio Rüdiger (CFC) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Goal! 90'+2' Goal! Chelsea 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Eden Hazard (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Willian following a corner. 90'+1' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Leander Dendoncker. 90'+1' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Matt Doherty. 90'+1' Attempt blocked. Ruben Loftus-Cheek (CFC) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.  Assisted by Gonzalo Higuaín. 90' Attempt blocked. César Azpilicueta (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Willian.  89' Sub, (WW) Adama Traoré replaces Raúl Jiménez. 88' Attempt blocked. Emerson (CFC) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Antonio Rüdiger with a headed pass. 87' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Rui Patrício. 87' Attempt saved. Willian (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Emerson. 84' Offside, (WW) Matt Doherty tries a through ball, but Raúl Jiménez is caught offside. 84' Foul by Callum Hudson-Odoi (CFC). 84' Willy Boly (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half.  82' Sub, (WW) Morgan Gibbs-White replaces Diogo Jota. Booking 80' Diogo Jota (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 79' David Luiz (CFC) wins a free kick on the right wing. 79' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). Booking 78' Antonio Rüdiger (CFC) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 78' Foul by Antonio Rüdiger  (CFC). 78' Diogo Jota (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 77' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Raúl Jiménez. 76' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Rúben Neves. 76' Attempt blocked. Willian (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 75' Foul by Willy Boly (WW). Booking 75' Willy Boly (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 75' Ruben Loftus-Cheek (CFC) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 74' Eden Hazard (CFC) wins a free kick on the right wing. 74' Foul by João Moutinho (WW).  72'Sub, (CFC) Willian replaces Jorginho. 71' Emerson (CFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 70' Attempt saved. Ruben Loftus-Cheek (CFC) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. 70' Attempt blocked. Antonio Rüdiger (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 69' Attempt missed. Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Callum Hudson-Odoi with a cross. 67' Callum Hudson-Odoi (CFC) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 67' Foul by Rúben Neves (WW). Booking 66' Romain Saïss (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 66' Eden Hazard (CFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 66' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 66' Attempt blocked. David Luiz (CFC) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ruben Loftus-Cheek. 63' Attempt blocked. César Azpilicueta (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by N'Golo Kanté.  61' Sub, (CFC) Callum Hudson-Odoi replaces Pedro. 61' Foul by Antonio Rüdiger (CFC). 61' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 61' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Willy Boly. 60' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Rui Patrício. 60' Attempt saved. Pedro (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Ruben Loftus-Cheek. 58' Attempt blocked. César Azpilicueta (CFC) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard with a cross. 58' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Rui Patrício. 58' Attempt saved. Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Pedro.  56' Sub, (CFC) Ruben Loftus-Cheek replaces Mateo Kovacic. Goal! 56'

Goal! Chelsea 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Diogo Jota with a through ball following a fast break.

53' Foul by Emerson (CFC). 53' Leander Dendoncker (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 51' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by João Moutinho. 51' Attempt blocked. David Luiz (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 50' Eden Hazard (CFC) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 50' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 49' Eden Hazard (CFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 49' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 46' Attempt blocked. Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Emerson.

Second Half begins Chelsea 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.


Half Time

         Chelsea Wolves

Possession  77%  23%

Shots        5    0

Shots on Tgt 1    0

Corners      4    0

Fouls        3    6

TEAM NEWS

45'+2'

First Half ends, Chelsea 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 0.


45'+1' Foul by Jorginho (CFC). 45'+1' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 42' Foul by Emerson (CFC). 42' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half (but Emerson not booked). 41' Hand ball by Diogo Jota (WW). Booking 37' Matt Doherty (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad (innocuous)foul. 37' Eden Hazard (CFC) wins a free kick on the left wing. 37' Foul by Matt Doherty (WW). 36' Pedro (CFC) wins a free kick on the right wing. 36' Foul by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 33' Mateo Kovacic (CFC) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 33' Mateo Kovacic (CFC) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 33' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 31' César Azpilicueta (CFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 31' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 31' Offside, (CFC) Jorginho tries a through ball, but Gonzalo Higuaín is caught offside. 26' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 25' Delay in match Conor Coady (WW) because of an injury. 25' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Romain Saïss. 25' Attempt blocked. Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Pedro with a cross. 23' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Jonny. 20' Attempt blocked. Antonio Rüdiger (CFC) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Eden Hazard with a cross. 19' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Rui Patrício. 19' Attempt saved. Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by N'Golo Kanté. 18' Jorginho (CFC) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 18' Foul by João Moutinho (WW). 11' Corner, (CFC) Conceded by Romain Saïss.   11' Attempt blocked. Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Pedro. 7' Foul by Gonzalo Higuaín (CFC). 7' João Moutinho (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 3' Attempt blocked. Mateo Kovacic (CFC) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Kick Off First Half begins.

TEAM NEWS

Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri will again rotate his squad for the Wolves fixture, which is sandwiched between two Europa League games.  Among those rested against Dynamo Kiev were Eden Hazard, N'Golo Kante, Cesar Azpilicueta and Antonio Rudiger.

Wolves will be without defender Ryan Bennett, who begins a two-match ban. Rui Patricio is set to return in goal, with John Ruddy given playing time last week ahead of his likely start in the FA Cup quarter-final.

MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

@SimonBrotherton: The recent storm around Maurizio Sarri seems to have passed for now with back-to-back wins over Spurs and Fulham in the league and a comfortable 3-0 first-leg lead established over Dynamo Kiev in the last 16 of the Europa League. Wolves will provide a stern test though, having already beaten Chelsea 2-1 at Molineux back in early December.  They've built on results like that, and have taken more points from the established top six than any of the other 14 sides in the Premier League. What's more, they head for Stamford Bridge having lost only one of the last seven games and are unbeaten in their five league matches played in London this season.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri: "I think we can gain the spot in the Champions League in the Premier League. We are fighting. We are only two points away, at the moment, and have to play one match in hand."

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo: "[December's win over Chelsea] was a very important moment because it ended a very bad moment, a bad run we had. It was a turning point in the competition but we know there are always ups and downs. When you have something that doesn't work out, it's about bouncing back and recovering and returning to these standards again. We made those against Cardiff after a bad performance, so let's sustain that consistency and challenge ourselves on Sunday."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION

Wolves have got a good record against the top-six clubs this season and beat Chelsea at Molineux in December, but I think they will find it a lot harder this time. Prediction: 2-0


MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head - Chelsea have registered six successive home wins against Wolves in all competitions, scoring 21 goals and conceding just two. Wolves could earn their first league double over Chelsea since 1974-75, when the Blues were relegated from the top flight. Chelsea have won three of their past four Premier League games - although they lost the other 6-0 at Manchester City. They haven't won three in a row in the league since beginning the season with five straight victories. The Blues are unbeaten at Stamford Bridge in the league in 2019, winning their last three home games in the top flight. Chelsea have kept clean sheets in half of their home league games this season. They are the only side not to have had a player sent off in this season's Premier League. Eden Hazard has been directly involved in 23 Premier League goals this season, scoring 12 and setting up 11 to equal his previous best, set in 2014-15.

Wolverhampton Wanderers have lost just one of their last seven league games (W4, D2). Only the two Manchester sides and Arsenal have taken more points than Wolves during that spell. They have kept just two away clean sheets in this season's Premier League. Nuno Espírito Santo's side are unbeaten in their five Premier League games in London this season (W3, D2). Wolves have used just 19 players in the league this season, the fewest of any top-flight side. Raul Jimenez is one short of equalling Wolves' Premier League record of 12 goals in a single campaign, currently held by Steven Fletcher. Jimenez has been directly involved in seven goals in his last seven Premier League games, with five goals and two assists.



29 H Sat 2 Mar 15:00 Cardiff    W2-0

29 Wolves 2 Jota (16'), Jiménez (18') Cardiff 0

HT 2-0


Diogo Jota and Raul Jimenez were on target as Wolves ended a three-match winless run in the league with victory over struggling Cardiff. Jota broke the deadlock in the 16th minute, exchanging passes with Jimenez on the edge of the Cardiff penalty area before finishing confidently past Neil Etheridge. Wolves doubled their lead just two minutes later when Jota returned the favour for Jimenez, who fired low into the corner for his 11th league goal of the campaign. Leander Dendoncker nearly made it 3-0 in the first half but struck the post from point-blank range before being denied by Etheridge on the follow-up. Cardiff's woes were compounded by an injury to Sol Bamba, who was carried off on a stretcher before half-time with what appeared to be a knee injury.

The win lifts seventh-placed Wolves onto 43 points - more than they have previously amassed in the Premier League - while Cardiff remain 18th, two points off safety following a third consecutive defeat.

Ryan Bennett's 10 yellow means he misses Chelsea and Man Utd, and was lucky not to be sent off just before half time.


Line-ups

Wolves

21Ruddy 5Bennett Booked at 34' 16Coady  15Boly 37Traoré sub for Cavaleiroat 75' 32Dendoncker 27Saïss 17Gibbs-White sub for João Moutinhoat 64' 29Vinagre 9Jiménez

 18Jota sub for Doherty at 47' Substitutes 2Doherty 7Cavaleiro 8Neves 10Hélder Costa 19Castro Otto 28João Moutinho 31Norris

Cardiff

1Etheridge 2Peltier Booked at 62' 4Morrison 22Bamba Booked at 45' sub for Ecuele Mangaat 45+2' 3Bennett 17Gunnarsson 21Camarasa 8Ralls 14De Cordova-Reid sub for  Patersonat 59' 10Zohore 29Niasse sub for Healeyat 76' Substitutes 5Ecuele Manga 7Arter 12Smithies 13Paterson 15Bacuna 23K Harris 32Healey

Referee: Andre Marriner Attendance: 31,309

Match Stats

        Wolves Cardiff

Possession 56% 44%

Shots      13  12

Shots on Tgt 6  4

Corners     7   8

Fouls      11   6


Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, (Cdf) 0.

Full Time 90'+4' Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, (Cdf) 0.

90'+2' Attempt blocked. Sean Morrison (Cdf) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Joe Ralls with a cross. 90'+2' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Conor Coady. 90' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Joe Bennett. 89' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Neil Etheridge. 89' Attempt saved. Rúben Vinagre (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Romain Saïss. 89' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Matt Doherty. 88' Foul by Rúben Vinagre (WW). 88' Sean Morrison (Cdf) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 87' Attempt saved. Sean Morrison (Cdf) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Joe Ralls with a cross. 86' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Romain Saïss. 86' Offside, (WW) Rúben Vinagre tries a through ball, but Ivan Cavaleiro is caught offside. 84' Attempt missed. Aron Gunnarsson (Cdf) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. 81' Attempt blocked. Joe Ralls (Cdf) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 80' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Romain Saïss. 80' Foul by Ivan Cavaleiro (WW). 80' Aron Gunnarsson (Cdf) wins a free kick on the right wing. 77' Ivan Cavaleiro (WW) wins a free kick on the left wing. 77' Foul by Aron Gunnarsson (Cdf). 76'Sub, (Cdf). Rhys Healey replaces Oumar Niasse. 75' Sub, (WW) Ivan Cavaleiro replaces Adama Traoré. 74' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Neil Etheridge. 74' Attempt saved. Raúl Jiménez (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Matt Doherty. 72' Foul by Ryan Bennett (WW). 72' Kenneth Zohore (Cdf) wins a free kick on the left wing. 70' Willy Boly (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 70' Foul by Sean Morrison (Cdf). 69' Attempt blocked. Joe Ralls (Cdf) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. 69' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Leander Dendoncker. 65' Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (WW) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by João Moutinho with a cross following a corner. 64' Sub, (WW) João Moutinho replaces Morgan Gibbs-White. 64' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Neil Etheridge. 63' Attempt saved. Rúben Vinagre (WW) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. Booking 62' Lee Peltier (Cdf) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 62' Rúben Vinagre (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 62' Foul by Lee Peltier (Cdf).  59' Sub, (Cdf). Callum Paterson replaces Bobby De Cordova-Reid. 58' Raúl Jiménez (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 58' Foul by Joe Ralls (Cdf). 57' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 56' Delay in match Joe Bennett (Cdf) because of an injury. 54' Attempt missed. Adama Traoré (WW) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez. 53' Attempt missed. Bobby De Cordova-Reid (Cdf) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Kenneth Zohore. 47' Attempt missed. Adama Traoré (WW) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez following a fast break. 7' Sub, (WW) Matt Doherty replaces Diogo Jota because of an injury.

Second Half

Second Half begins Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, (Cdf) 0.

HT

        Wolves Cardiff

Possession 54%  46%

Shots       6    5

Shots on Target 3  2

Corners  3   3

Fouls      6   2

Half Time

45'+8' First Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, (Cdf) 0.

45'+7' Attempt missed. Aron Gunnarsson (Cdf) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left following a set piece situation. 45'+6' Foul by Ryan Bennett (WW). 45'+6' Joe Bennett (Cdf) wins a free kick on the left wing. 45'+6' Hand ball by Morgan Gibbs-White (WW). 45'+5' Attempt saved. Sean Morrison (Cdf) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Joe Ralls. 45'+4' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 45'+4' Oumar Niasse (Cdf) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 45'+2' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 45'+2' Sub, (Cdf). Bruno Ecuele Manga replaces Sol Bamba because of an injury. Booking  45'+1' Sol Bamba (Cdf) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 43' Delay in match Sol Bamba (Cdf) because of an injury. 43' Adama Traoré (WW) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 43' Foul by Sol Bamba (Cdf). 41' Foul by Romain Saïss (WW). 41' Bobby De Cordova-Reid (Cdf) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 39' Delay over. They are ready to continue. 39' Delay in match Diogo Jota (WW) because of an injury. 37' Foul by Diogo Jota (WW). 37' Víctor Camarasa (Cdf) wins a free kick in the defensive half. Booking 34' Ryan Bennett (WW) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul. 34' Foul by Ryan Bennett (WW). 34' Bobby De Cordova-Reid (Cdf) wins a free kick in the attacking half. 33' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Sol Bamba. 33' Attempt blocked. Willy Boly (WW) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Morgan Gibbs-White with a cross. 33' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Neil Etheridge. 33' Attempt saved. Leander Dendoncker (WW) left footed shot from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal. 33' Leander Dendoncker (WW) hits the left post with a right footed shot from very close range. Assisted by Romain Saïss following a corner. 32' Corner, (WW) Conceded by Joe Bennett. 29' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Ryan Bennett.

29' Attempt blocked. Oumar Niasse (Cardiff City) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Víctor Camarasa. 28' Attempt blocked. Diogo Jota (WW) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Willy Boly. 24' Attempt missed. Joe Ralls (Cdf) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Bobby De Cordova-Reid. 23' Attempt missed. Morgan Gibbs-White (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Rúben Vinagre with a cross following a fast break.

Goal!

18' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, (Cdf) 0. Raúl Jiménez (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Diogo Jota.

Goal!

16' Goal! Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, (Cdf) 0. Diogo Jota (WW) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Raúl Jiménez.

13' Hand ball by Raúl Jiménez (WW). 12' Foul by Kenneth Zohore (Cdf). 12' Willy Boly (WW) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 10' Attempt blocked. Kenneth Zohore (Cdf) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Joe Bennett with a cross. 9' Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Ryan Bennett. 6' Attempt saved. Aron Gunnarsson (Cdf) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Víctor Camarasa with a cross. 5'  Corner, (Cdf). Conceded by Ryan Bennett. 4' Aron Gunnarsson (Cdf) wins a free kick in the defensive half. 4' Foul by Morgan Gibbs-White (WW). Kick Off

First Half begins.


TEAM NEWS

Wolves goalkeeper John Ruddy will make his first league start of the season to help prepare him for the FA Cup quarter-final later this month. Defender Ryan Bennett is currently on nine yellow cards, so one more would trigger a two-match ban.

Cardiff's Victor Camarasa is finally fit after a calf problem. Oumar Niasse returns after being ineligible to face parent club Everton in midweek, while Joe Ralls, who missed the game with a pelvic problem, is fit. Harry Arter and Callum Paterson could both return after being rested in midweek.


MOTD COMMENTATOR'S NOTES

Martin Fisher: Cardiff's climb out of the relegation zone proved to be brief, and losing heavily at home to Watford and then Everton will have severely dented already fragile confidence. In this deeply troubling season for Neil Warnock, it's a major challenge of his motivational powers to rouse his players again. No doubt he will bring up their recent wins at Southampton and Leicester, while Wolves' loss at Huddersfield on Tuesday might provide further encouragement - as should their victory in the reverse fixture in Wales last November.

Wolves have stuttered of late but surely it's only a matter of time before they click into gear again. Isn't it?

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock on his players: "I had a chat with them all [after the Everton defeat] and put my point of view forward about the remainder of the season. After that they had a meeting of their own and I was quite pleased about that. When you do make mistakes you don't tend to look in the mirror, you tend to look around. All I've asked is for them to look in the mirror."

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo on the decision to play John Ruddy: "Because in two weeks' time, we're going to play in the FA Cup, and John Ruddy is going to be in goal. We consider this is the right moment for him to get some game time in competition, and to be stronger."

LAWRO'S PREDICTION

Wolves have now lost home and away to Huddersfield, which is a surprise when you think about the season that Nuno Espirito Santo's side have had. Defeat here would mean Cardiff will also do the double over them, but I don't expect that to happen. Prediction: 2-1

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head Cardiff came from behind to win 2-1 in their first Premier League meeting last November.  Wolves have lost on three of the last five occasions they have hosted Cardiff. The away team is winless in each of the last 22 Premier League fixtures between two promoted teams since Leicester City beat Burnley in April 2015.

Wolverhampton Wanderers have lost just one of their last six league matches, and one of nine in all competitions - but that was against bottom-of-the-table Huddersfield. They are unbeaten in five home games in all competitions, winning four of them. Wolves have scored just four first-half goals at home in this season's Premier League - no other top-flight team has scored fewer. Wanderers have already equalled their highest Premier League tally of 40 points.

Nuno Espirito Santo's first defeat as Wolves head coach was against Cardiff City.

Cardiff have lost successive league matches, conceding eight goals in the process. The Bluebirds have failed to score in 12 of their 28 league games (43%). Only bottom side Huddersfield have a worse record. Cardiff have conceded at least three goals in 11 different Premier League games this season, more than any other side.

They have a passing accuracy of just 64.2% this season, the lowest tally by a Premier League team in a season since Stoke's 64% in 2010-11. Cardiff have scored seven first-half goals this season, fewer than any other Premier League side. Sixteen of their last 19 league goals were scored in the second half.


 









Match

Day

Date

KO

Sky

HOME

Score

Score

AWAY

Pts

Cum

Posn

GD

report

2018-19 Pre Season Friendlies

November 2018-February 2019


March 2019-May 2019



29

Sat

2 March

15:00


Wolves

2

0

Cardiff

3

43

7

2

Sheeps H

30

Sun

10 March

14:05:00

Sky

Chelski   

1

1

Wolves

1

44

7

2

Chelski A

FACQ

Sat

16 March

19:55

BBC

Wolves

2

1

ManUtd

FA

Cup

qtr

final

FAC6

31

Sat

16 March

15:00


Wolves

p

p

Arsenal   

moved to 23/24 April

Gooners H

32

Sat

30 March

15:00


Burnley  

2

0

Wolves

0

44

7

0

Clarets H

33

Tue

2 April

19:45

Sky

Wolves

2

1

ManUtd  

3

47

7

1

ManU A

FACSF

Sun

7 April

16:00

BT

Watford

 ( at Wembley)

3

2

Wolves

FA

Cup

SF

AET

FACSF

34

Sat

13 April

15:00


Saints   

3

1

Wolves

0

47

8

-1

Saints A

35

Sat

20 April

15:00


Wolves

0

0

Brighton   

1

48

10

-1

Seagulls H

31

Wed

24 April

19:45


Wolves

3

1

Arsenal   

3

51

7

1

Gooners H

36

Sat

27 April

15:00


Watford   

1

2

Wolves

3

54

7

2

Hornets A

37

Sat

4 May   

15:00


Wolves

1

0

Fulham   

3

57

7

3

Cottagers H

38

Sun

12 May 2019

15:00


 Liverpool

2

0

Wolves

0

57

7

1

LPool A


Sat

18th May

tbc


FA Cup Final









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