Wolves 2-0 Crystal Palace Player Ratings

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Wolves moved level on points at the top of the Premier League with a 2-0 victory against Crystal Palace on Friday night. Two first half goals from debutant Rayan Ait-Nouri and Daniel Podence clinched the win at Molineux, while Palace had Luka Milivojevic sent off late on following a VAR review.

Rui Patricio

Would have dreamt of a game like this following his rare error which led to Newcastle’s equaliser last week. The Portugal number one was untroubled for most of the game, but was solid when called upon, most notably from Townsend’s deflected strike. Patricio has undoubtedly had harder games in his career but can’t be faulted. 7/10.

Willy Boly

Was fortunate that Patrick van Aanholt was offside before he felled the Dutchman in the area, but apart from that was solid defensively, along with the rest of the back three. Should’ve really given Wolves the lead when his close-range header was blocked, but the 29-year-old has certainly returned to form following some shaky post-lockdown performances. 7/10.

Conor Coady

Yet again, Wolves’ skipper was imperious at the heart of defence. Made superb tackles on Zaha and van Aanholt as they looked to be through on goal and was his usual vocal, commanding self. A third England call up will surely come this week, and will be no less than deserved based on Coady’s last three performances. 8/10.

Max Kilman

Another solid performance from the 23-year-old. Was rarely troubled one on one but, as usual, made no errors and looked comfortable on what was just his sixth Premier League start. Looks to have made the left centre-back spot his to lose. 7/10.

Nelson Semedo

Put on a performance to show why Wolves splashed out an initial £27m fee on the Portuguese international. Constantly had the beating of Patrick van Aanholt on the right-hand side and delivered some wicked crosses in the opening 15 minutes. Following a solid performance against Newcastle last week, Semedo looks to have settled in the Premier League. 8/10.

Leander Dendoncker

It’s no coincidence that Wolves have been unbeaten since Dendoncker returned to the starting XI. The Belgian has offered the side stability, defensive grit and also bombing forward runs in his four starts since the shocking defeat at West Ham, with this display epitomising his good form. Dendoncker provided a brilliant attacking threat while keeping Palace’s physical midfield quiet, but should have capped his superb performance with a goal from Neto’s superb cross in the second half. Has cemented himself as one of the first names on the team sheet. 9/10.

Ruben Neves

Another positive of Dendoncker’s reintroduction to the starting line-up has been the return to form of Neves. The 23-year-old made the game look easy on Friday night; while his job was made easier for him by advanced forward options, Neves was solid defensively and produced a brilliant range of passing. Went close to ending his 51-week goal drought with a superb strike that flew just over Guaita’s crossbar. One of five or six contenders for man of the match. 8/10.

Rayan Ait-Nouri

The Frenchman was given his chance following another injury to Marcal and made sure he didn’t let it go to waste. The natural balance Ait-Nouri offered seemed to be the reason for Wolves’ rare first-half successes and capped an impressive performance with a superb first professional goal. Must have impressed Nuno to displace Romain Saiss just three weeks after signing, and gave the performance of a seasoned veteran. Man of the match. 9/10.

Pedro Neto

Has become one of Wolves’ key men in recent weeks, and capped an impressive performance by picking up his second assist of the season for Podence’s goal. Neto was a constant thorn in Palace’s side down the right flank and was unlucky to not get an assist when Dendoncker sliced an effort wide from his superb cross. It’s no mean feat to keep Adama Traore out of the starting XI, but Neto is managing it with ease at the minute with fine performances. 8/10.

Raul Jimenez

Was starved of service, but for once this wasn’t costly as a different player scored for Wolves for just the third time this season. Picked up the ball from deep late in the second half and beat two Palace defenders before striking a tame effort at Guaita in what was his best moment of the night. Enjoyed good link-up play with Neto and Podence, as per usual. 7/10.

Daniel Podence

As with Kilman, it’s hard to believe that this was just Podence’s ninth league start for Wolves, given how integral he has become to the club since his first start in July. Picked up his second goal for the club, both of which have come against Palace, with a calm finish from Neto’s cross, and always looked dangerous in attacking positions. From a bit-part player for the first six months of his Wolves career, Podence is now one of Nuno’s star men. 8/10.

Subs

Joao Moutinho

Was named on the bench for a second successive game and was introduced in place of Neto on 76 minutes. Was lucky not to suffer a serious ankle injury from Milivojevic’s red card challenge, but returned to help see the game out. 6/10.

Adama Traore

Also introduced on 76 minutes, in place of Podence. Had a good chance just before the 90 was up but fired straight at fellow countryman Guaita before flashing the ball just past the far post whilst on the ground with the last kick of the game. Has some work to do to displace Neto or Podence in attack. 6/10.

Fabio Silva

Introduced on 90 minutes and had next to no time to make an impact. N/A.

James Wynn is part of the Talking Wolves editorial team – you can follow him on Twitter here.