Wolves 2 – 1 Leicester

Wolves kept themselves in the race for a top four finish in the Premier League on Sunday with a 2-1 win against Leicester at Molineux.

Bruno Lage’s men took a ninth-minute lead thanks to Ruben Neves’ strike, and hit back to take all three points through Daniel Podence after Ademola Lookman had levelled for the Foxes.

Leicester – who have not won a Premier League game since beating Liverpool 1-0 on December 28 – were put under the cosh early on, with the hosts looking to attack in wide areas, and went behind with less than 10 minutes on the clock.

A cross from the left-hand side caused panic in the box, with Raul Jimenez able to hold the ball up and pull it back to Neves, who found the net with a sweetly struck first time shot from the edge of the area.

Ruben Neves’ sweet first time shot had given Wolves the lead at Molineux

Despite looking shaky from defensive set-pieces, the Foxes responded reasonably well and tested Wolves goalkeeper Jose Sa with fierce drives from Youri Tielemans and Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, but shortly before the break, they pulled level.

Marc Albrighton ran on to Tielemans’ gorgeous defence-splitting pass and pulled the ball across the box for Ademola Lookman, who prodded in. It was just the second goal Wolves had conceded from open play in 13 league games.

Player ratings

Wolves: Sa (6), Kilman (6), Coady (6), Saiss (6), Semedo (6), Neves (7), Dendoncker (6), Moutinho (6), Ait-Nouri (6), Jimenez (6), Podence (7)

Subs: Hwang (5), Neto (N/A), Marcal (N/A)

Leicester: Schmeichel (5), Pereira (6), Amartey (6), Soyuncu (5), Thomas (6), Tielemans (6), Ndidi (5), Dewsbury-Hall (6), Lookman (7), Daka (5), Albrighton (6)

Subs: Maddison (5), Iheanacho (5)

Man of the match: Daniel Podence

The timing of the equaliser spurred Leicester on after the break and they took control, forcing Sa into a couple more saves, before Tielemans once again lifted a shot over the target.

But against the run of play, Wolves soon had the lead once more. Podence collected a square ball on the edge of the area, set himself and fired a low shot out of Kasper Schmeichel’s reach and into the bottom left corner.

Was Jimenez interfering with play?
VAR Stuart Attwell ruled that Wolves’ Raul Jimenez was not interfering with play in the build-up to Daniel Podence’s winner.
Was Jimenez interfering with play?

The VAR Stuart Atwell reviewed the goal, with two Wolves players standing in offside positions. But he ruled that neither had interfered with play and confirmed the goal.

Team news

  • Bruno Lage made just one alteration to his Wolves side following last weekend’s 2-0 victory over Tottenham, with Luke Cundle dropping to the bench to make way for Joao Moutinho, who returned after a two-game absence.
  • Meanwhile, following the 4-1 midweek Europa Conference League victory over Randers, Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers brought in Ricardo Pereira and Luke Thomas, with Jannik Vestergaard on the bench and Harvey Barnes not included in the squad.

Brendan Rodgers introduced James Maddison and Kelechi Iheanacho in the closing stages in order to try and force what would have been a welcome equaliser, but Leicester could not find it.

Man of the match – Daniel Podence

Neves the long-range specialist

  • Wolves scored two goals from outside the box in a single Premier League game for the first time, in what was their 290th match in the competition.
  • Six of Wolves’ 23 Premier League goals this season have come from outside the box (26%), a higher share than any other side.
  • 13 of Ruben Neves’ 20 league goals for Wolves have been scored from outside the box, including each of his last three in the Premier League. Indeed, Neves has scored seven Premier League goals from outside the box, three more than any other Wolves player.

What’s next?

Wolves travel to the Emirates Stadium to face Arsenal in the Premier League on Thursday February 24 at 7.45pm. Meanwhile, Leicester travel to Randers in the Europa Conference League at 5.45pm on the same night.

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