Steve Bull Stand

Wolves 3-1 Southampton – Player Ratings

Wolves continued their good form with a 3-1 victory over Southampton at Molineux on Saturday. Wolves took the lead mid-way through the first half with a calmly dispatched Raul Jimenez penalty after a rare VAR intervention in Wolves’ favour. Jose Sa pulled off several good saves to maintain Wolves’ lead before Conor Coady netted in front of the Southbank to make it two. A stunning free kick from James Ward-Prowse gave the Saints hope with ten minutes to go, but substitute Adama Traore slotted home the third in stoppage time to round off the victory. Bruno Lage’s men remain eighth and are firmly in the hunt for a European place ahead of next week’s trip to Brentford

 

Jose Sa

Played a huge part in Wolves’ victory with two excellent saves before half time to maintain Wolves’ lead. He was calm and assured throughout and is finally getting the recognition he deserves in the media. 9/10

 

Max Kilman

Yet another superb defensive display from Wolves’ latest hero. Kilman did everything that was required of him with ease and looked assured on the ball. He was desperately unlucky to see his looping header hit the post, but with performances like this, those ‘Kilman for England’ chants will only get louder. 9/10

 

Conor Coady

Another good display from the Wolves captain who had a memorable moment with his goal in front of the Southbank in the second half. He doesn’t score many, but his goal is just reward for his fine form this season. 9/10

 

Toti Gomes

A surprise inclusion having been recalled from Grasshoppers at the start of January, but Gomes repaid the faith of Bruno Lage who admitted he did not know anything about the Portuguese defender at the beginning of the month. Defensively, he was brilliant, and despite giving the ball away in possession, Gomes had as good a debut as he could have hoped for. 8/10

 

Nelson Semedo

A quiet afternoon for the Wolves right wing back who was solid and linked play well. He didn’t have the attacking influence we have seen in recent weeks but another good performance none the less. 7/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

Kept his place in the starting XI as Ruben Neves missed out with COVID-19. The Belgian midfielder put in a good performance, breaking up play and proving an effective aerial presence. He did however, slow the pace of play down particularly in the first half. 7/10

 

Joao Moutinho

Continued his good form with another performance full of class and quality which we have come to expect. Moutinho orchestrated the midfield with ease despite the loss of Neves alongside him. 8/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

Ait-Nouri produced another excellent display, and like many others is arguably in the best form of his Wolves career. He won the ball back on several occasions and linked play well going forwards.  8/10

 

Francisco Trincao

Trincao was largely anonymous for most of his time on the pitch. He had little influence on the front three and despite some nice touches, is not staking a claim for a starting place with the imminent return of Pedro Neto.  6/10

 

Raul Jimenez

A much-improved performance from Jimenez following a recent dip in form. Jimenez linked play well and lead the press from the front. He dispatched his penalty well in the usual style to set Wolves on their way. 8/10

 

Daniel Podence

A quieter performance from Podence following his two goals against Sheffield United last week. He looked good on the ball and looked to bring Jimenez and Trincao into play when possible. 7/10

 

Subs:

Adama Traore

A very good cameo from the bench from Traore as speculation continues over his future. Traore missed a glaring chance with just minutes to go but finally got this first Premier League goal of the season, slotting home with his weaker foot in stoppage time. 8/10

 

Fabio Silva

Yet another impressive cameo from Fabio Silva who was very effective at getting Wolves higher up the pitch in the closing stages. He produced an excellent piece of skill to create a chance for himself which was well saved. 8/10

 

Luke Cundle

Came on for the final minute of the game for his Premier League debut. N/A

 

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

 

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Wolves 3-0 Sheffield United – Player Ratings

Wolves progressed into the fourth round of the FA Cup with ease following a 3-0 demolition of Championship side Sheffield United at Molineux. Bruno Lage fielded a strong side following Monday’s victory at Old Trafford, and his Wolves team have been rewarded with another home time, this time against a struggling Norwich side in round four. Following a nervy start to the game, Daniel Podence set Wolves on their way giving thanks to good work from Fabio Silva. A superb second goal finished by Nelson Semedo made the game comfortable before Podence rounded the scoring off with his second of the day.

 

John Ruddy

Wolves’ back up goalkeeper proved his worth with several good saves to ensure the game remained comfortable. His save from Billy Sharp’s close-range effort shortly after the second goal ensured Wolves could relax for the closing stages of the game. 8/10

 

Max Kilman

Yet another faultless display from Kilman whose consistency is quite something. He did all that was required of him defensively and looked to get involved in attacks where possible. That England call up can’t be far away. 8/10

 

Conor Coady

Coady, like Kilman, produced a faultless display at the heart of the defence. His ball distribution was excellent and played a big part in the build up to the Wolves goals. Following a shaky start, Coady may well be having the best season of his career. 8/10

 

Marcal

Played the first half on the left side of the back three but was withdrawn at half time as a precaution. Marcal gave the ball away in a dangerous area on more than one occasion but recovered well to ensure the clean sheet remained intact.  7/10

 

Nelson Semedo

Another excellent display from Nelson Semedo who has really started to prove his worth this season. His link up play down the right flank was superb and he was faultless defensively. His determination to get on the end of Ait-Nouri’s cross for the second gaol summed up his performance. 9/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

Played alongside Neves in the midfield in the first half, often breaking play up and allowing Neves the space to be creative on the ball. He then moved to the right-hand side of the back three for the second 45 minutes and looked assured, proving an effective aerial presence when defending. 7/10

 

Ruben Neves

Another superb display from Neves in the Wolves midfield who may just be in the form of his Wolves career now. His passing range was a joy to behold, and the Sheffield United midfield did not know what to do with him. 8/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

Back following injury and back to the promising form his showed at the start of the season. Ait-Nouri was determined and direct, looking to take players on and get to the by-line. His cross to Semedo for the second goal was weighted perfectly. He has certainly staked a claim for a start against Southampton on Saturday. 8/10

 

Adama Traore

A surprise inclusion following mounting speculation of a move away from Molineux this month. Traore was not afraid to get on the ball but was largely ineffective with it. He seemed reluctant to take players on out wide, often coming infield to more crowded areas. He certainly gave the United defenders something to think about, but it just didn’t quite come off for him. 7/10

 

Fabio Silva

An excellent performance from Fabio Silva who felt the appreciation of the Molineux crowd for the first time when he was substituted in the second half. His link up play with Podence was extremely pleasing and ultimately created the first goal. With Raul not in the best form, Silva may soon be knocking on the door for a Premier League start. 8/10

 

Daniel Podence

Without doubt the best player on the pitch. Podence’s movement on and off the ball was mesmerising, leaving the Sheffield United defence dumbstruck. He will be delighted to get on the scoresheet again, having been prolific in the League cup earlier in the season too. 9/10

 

Subs:

Joao Moutinho

Played the second half and produced the calm and assured midfield display we have come to expect. It certainly wasn’t the most difficult 45 minutes of football he will have played, and he is likely to regain his place in the starting XI for the game against Southampton. 7/10

 

Raul Jimenez

Linked play well with the midfield and wing backs but couldn’t fashion a clear-cut chance to get on the scoresheet. He will be keen to rediscover his form following the impressive display from Silva. 7/10

 

Francisco Trincao

An impressive cameo from Trincao who went on several dazzling runs through the midfield and defence. As has often been the case this season, Trincao’s end product was lacking, often holding on to the ball too long or opting to shoot when the pass is the better option. 7/10

 

Bruno Jordao

Will be delighted to get back into first team action following two serious injuries. Bruno Lage is thought to be impressed with Jordao and this is unlikely to be the last time we see him this season. N/A

 

Luke Cundle

Similar to Jordao, Bruno Lage is thought to be a big fan of academy graduate Luke Cundle, who has been on the bench numerous times this season. He came on for the final five minutes in the front three and looked calm and confident on the ball. N/A

 

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

Wolves stadium

Wolves 0-0 Burnley – Player Ratings

Wolves were held to their second successive 0-0 draw in the Premier League after it finished goalless against Burnley at Molineux on Wednesday night. It certainly was not one for the purists and Wolves failed to live up to the heights of their previous home game against West Ham. Despite this, Wolves had the opportunities to win the game, Adama Traore going closest with his effort crashing off the underside of the crossbar.

 

Jose Sa

A comfortable night for the Wolves goalkeeper with just the one major save to make from Dwight McNeil in the second half. His handling and command of the area was superb and gives the defence a huge confidence boost against sides like Burnley who have a dangerous physical presence in the box. 7/10

 

Max Kilman

Yet another excellent defensive display from Kilman who has hardly put a foot wrong all season. Kilman was excellent on the ball too, looking to bring the ball higher up the pitch allowing the midfield and wing backs to push on. Unfortunately  those around him were on a different wavelength at times. 8/10

 

Conor Coady

A faultless defensive display from Coady who organised and leaded the team as we have come to expect. He was unable to start any meaningful attacks from the back due to Burnley’s high press, so was restricted to sideways balls to his fellow defenders or wing backs in deeper positions. 7/10

 

Romain Saiss

Saiss, like the rest of the defence, had a comfortable evening with the visitors offering little threat going forwards. He too tried to play Ait-Nouri down the left flank as often as possible, but Wolves just couldn’t increase the tempo enough to put real pressure on Burnley. 7/10

 

Nelson Semedo

Possibly the pick of the players on the pitch in terms of his effort and endeavour in an attacking sense, but also his hard work tracking back and nullifying any threat Burnley had out wide. Semedo looked to link with Traore and Jimenez but nothing came to fruition. 7/10

 

Joao Moutinho

An increased responsibility on his shoulders with Neves missing out through suspension and Moutinho didn’t really have any impact on the game. He was calm and assured on the ball but never looked to find the pass to break the lines of defence. He was also too easy to get past from a defensive point of view in the midfield. 6/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

Replaced the suspended Neves and didn’t take his opportunity to stake a claim for a place in the starting XI. Dendoncker often slowed play down and had little impact in an offensive sense. Wolves missed Neves, there is no doubt about that. 5/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

Overall, Ait-Nouri put in another good performance as he continues to develop. He was relatively sound defensively and comfortable on the ball. He saw a lot of the ball in the final third but often checked back, slowing the attack down. On the rare occasions he got to the by-line his cross was poor and Wolves could not create a meaningful chance from them. 6/10

 

Adama Traore

Just where to start with Adama Traore. On the one hand, if Traore wasn’t on the pitch Wolves would not have created a single chance all evening. On the other hand, Traore wasted numerous good positions including a break mid-way through the second half where he had acres of space and instead produced an awful, floated cross towards Jimenez which was easily intercepted. His effort that hit the crossbar was unlucky, but Jimenez was in a far better position to his left. It was yet another frustrating night for the Spanish winger. 6/10

 

Raul Jimenez

A quiet evening from Jimenez whose frustration was evident. There were signs of his partnership with Traore developing again, but Traore could not produce the final ball for him. He was often forced wide or deep to get the ball which left Wolves short of numbers in the box. 6/10

 

Hwang Hee-Chan

A typical Hwang performance, full of energy and enthusiasm showing just why he is adored by the Molineux crowd. He had a few half chances and looked to link with Traore and Jimenez where possible, but it was an off night in general for the front three. 6/10

 

Subs:

Francisco Trincao

Replaced Hwang for the final ten minutes and was unable to impact the game. He had one dazzling run through the midfield, but nothing came of the attack. It will be interesting to see whether he is restored to the starting XI for the visit of Liverpool on Saturday. 6/10

 

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

1024px-Carrow_Road_-_fans_holding_yellow_or_green_fliers

Norwich 0-0 wolves – Player Ratings

Wolves held Norwich to a goalless draw at Carrow road on Saturday and were perhaps fortunate to leave with a point. After a promising first thirty minutes Wolves failed to create any meaningful chances and had goalkeeper Jose Sa to thanks for the clean sheet which ultimately earned the point. Despite the disappointing performance Wolves remain sixth and will look to continue their good form against Burnley at Molineux on Wednesday.

 

Jose Sa

It was yet another faultless display from the new Wolves number one who produced several good saves to earn Wolves a point. His save from Max Aarons late in the first half was particularly important, while his command of area and distribution was once again impressive. 8/10

 

Max Kilman

Wolves’ play of the season so far did not disappoint at Norwich, defending well both aerially and physically. He covered well for Semedo and looked to get on the ball as often as possible. 7/10

 

Conor Coady

An excellent defensive display from the Wolves captain who produced several important blocks and challenges as Norwich looked to find a way through. The lack of movement around him made starting attacks from the back difficult but Coady performed his primary duty to perfection. 8/10

 

Romain Saiss

Saiss, like the rest of the defence, put in an impressive defensive display, dealing with everything that came his way. With the absence of Wily Boly prolonged, Saiss must keep up his good form if Wolves are to pick up results in December. 7/10

 

Nelson Semedo

Semedo failed to live up to the heights of his performance against West Ham but in truths so did everyone who played ahead of him. The right wing back was solid enough defensively but lacked ambition and intensity going forward, opting for the safe pass at every opportunity. 6/10

 

Joao Moutinho

It was a poor performance from Moutinho who failed to have any real impact on the game both defensively and offensively. He struggled to link with the front three and the young Norwich midfield found it far to easy to bypass him. 5/10

 

Ruben Neves

After a promising start to the game, Neves also had little impact on the game after a superb performance against West Ham. He struggled to create and get any meaningful attacks going, with the those ahead of him static and isolated. 6/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

Despite showing vast improvements in recent weeks, Ait-Nouri didn’t have his best display at Carrow Road. He was often caught out of position and lost possession far too easily. He had little effect on the game going forwards, like Semedo, opting for the safe pass too often. 5/10

 

Francisco Trincao

A poor display from Trincao who would only have come into the side at late notice following the news that Daniel Podence had tested positive for COVID-19. Trincao lost possession on far too many occasions and failed to link with his fellow forwards to create meaningful chances. 4/10

 

Raul Jimenez

It wasn’t for the want of trying from Jimenez, but he had an incredibly quiet afternoon, failing to register a shot on target. He was often seen coming deep to get the ball, which is also the fault of those around him, as he tried to get Wolves on the front foot to no avail. 6/10

 

Hwang Hee-Chan

Like Jimenez there was certainly no lack of effort from the latest fans favourite, but Hwang struggled to get into the game and couldn’t link with those around him as Wolves failed to have any real sustained spells of pressure in the game. 5/10

 

Subs:

Adama Traore

Just what is going on with Adama Traore? Came off the bench with half an hour to go and had little to no impact on the game. In his defence he was switched into three different positions during his time on the field. His ineffective cameo will only raise further questions over his future and why Bruno Lage continues to leave him on the bench. 5/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

A much-needed physical presence in the midfield for the closing stages of the game and is likely to start against Burnley on Wednesday evening following Ruben Neves picking up his fifth yellow card of the season. 6/10

 

Ki-Jana Hoever

Played the final minutes of the game allowed Traore to move further forward in case there was a chance for a late counter attack. N/A

Selhurst park

Crystal Palace 2-0 Wolves – Player Ratings

Wolves’ five-game unbeaten run ended abruptly as they were convincingly beaten by Patrick Viera’s Crystal Palace on Saturday afternoon. It was a lacklustre performance in which Wolves never really got going, failing to live up to the heights of the performance against Everton on Monday night. Goals from Wilfred Zaha and Connor Gallagher sent Wolves home without a point, giving the home side the win that they deserved. Wolves are back at Molineux after the international break against in form West Ham United.

Raul Jimenez Xmas Cards – Available Now

raul card

 

Jose Sa

Made a mess of a deep cross into the box which ultimately led to the opening goal of the game, but Wolves should have defended the second phase of the attack far better. His distribution was not up to the usual standard, but he did make several saves which ultimately saved Wolves the embarrassment of a heavy defeat at Selhurst Park. 6/10

 

Max Kilman

Was solid defensively with much of what was thrown at him and looked to step out of defence and get Wolves further up the pitch as they failed to create. His passing was poor, and he was caught out of position several times. 6/10

 

Conor Coady

A poor display from the Wolves captain who once again showed his inability to defend against big and physical strikers, this time Christian Benteke. He was far too slow in pushing out the box for the opener, capping off an afternoon to forget before he departs for England duty. 4/10

 

Romain Saiss

Saiss like Coady, had a poor afternoon and was also partly at fault for the first Palace goal, playing Zaha onside. He was poor on the ball too, incapable of dealing with the high press that the home side forced on Wolves. 5/10

 

Nelson Semedo

Not Semedo’s finest afternoon in a Wolves shirt as the wing back struggled defensively for much of the game, Max Kilman often covering for him. He did however, look to get Wolves up the pitch, particularly in the first half, but had little support in doing so as Wolves failed to create a clear cut chance. 5/10

 

Joao Moutinho

Struggled to assert any kind of dominance in the midfield and was in truth, non-existent when Palace on the ball. For his many strengths, Moutinho is far too easy to get past in midfield and this is an issue Wolves must address. He did however go closest to getting a goal with his free kick being tipped round the post by Guaita. 5/10

 

Ruben Neves

Failed to build on his man of the match display against Everton last week with a poor showing in the defeat at Selhurst Park. He was poor on the ball with far too many passes going astray, while he failed to stop many Palace attacks as they drifted through the middle of the park with ease. 5/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

Like Semedo on the opposite flank, Ait-Nouri tried to make things happen but had little support around him, forcing him to go backwards far too often. Wolves’ attacking chemistry just wasn’t quite there and that will be the biggest disappointment for Bruno Lage. 6/10

 

Francisco Trincao

A poor display from Trincao having put in arguably his best performance in gold and black on Monday night. Almost every pass went astray in the final third with the Portuguese winger failing to create a single chance. 4/10

 

Raul Jimenez

Jimenez cut a lonely and frustrated figure for much of the match, failing to link with Hwang and Trincao, and going a full game without mustering a shot for the first time in a Wolves shirt. 5/10

 

Hwang Hee-Chan

Failed to live up to the heights of his impressive start to his Wolves career, on a different wavelength to those around him. A day to forget for those in the front three for Wolves. 5/10

 

Subs:

Adama Traore

Replaced Nelson Semedo with 20 minutes to go and injected some much-needed energy going forwards. He was far more direct than any other player on the day but couldn’t create anything meaningful from the more restrictive wing back position. 6/10

 

Daniel Podence

Came into the front three and failed to improve the movement and creativity that had been lacking all game. Will certainly be in with a chance of starting against West Ham after his impressive start to the season. 5/10

 

Fabio Silva

Played the final few minutes without having any time to make a real impact on the game. N/A

 

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

elland road

Leeds United 1-1 Wolves – Player Ratings

Wolves continued their impressive unbeaten run with a 1-1 draw against a struggling Leeds United side at Elland Road. Wolves left frustrated having conceded a 93rd minute penalty, just three minutes before full time. However, a poor second half display where Wolve struggled to assert any control and gain any momentum means Leeds’ equaliser was more than deserved. Bruno Lage’s men, therefore, missed out on the chance to move into the top four but are sat comfortably in mid table ahead of returning to Molineux against Everton on Monday.

 

Jose Sa

Yet another superb display from the new Wolves shot stopper who has settled into life in the Premier League with ease. Sa made some good saves in the second half to keep the home side at bay, including an excellent stop from a Gelhardt effort just ten minutes from time. His distribution was once again impressive as he looked to get Wolves up the pitch in the second half to combat the sustained Leeds pressure. 8/10

 

Max Kilman

Kilman put in another assured display away from home and is quickly becoming Wolves’ most consistent and reliable defender. He dealt with almost everything that came his way, particularly in the second half as Leeds asserted their dominance. 7/10

 

Conor Coady

Coady has quickly put his early season slump behind him and is now getting back to his best. He was assured defensively, and he tried to involve the wing backs with his distribution whenever possible. He was comfortable on the ball too, impressive considering the high and intense press that Bielsa’s Leeds side are known for. 7/10

 

Romain Saiss

Did relatively well for most of the game but will be disappointed with his involvement in the penalty that ultimately gave Leeds the equaliser. While he was by no means the only player at fault here, he must improve when players are running at him, especially in the penalty area. 6/10

 

Nelson Semedo

Like Saiss, Semedo played well until his challenge on Gelhadt gave Rodrigo the chance from the spot. He was excellent down the right-hand side in the first half and played a crucial part in Wolves’ goal, crossing for Jimenez whose deflected shot fell to the feet of Hwang. Semedo had little choice but to do something with Gelhardt running through on goal, but the defending was clumsy to say the least. 6/10

 

Joao Moutinho

Did the basics well as we have now come to expect but didn’t have any meaningful impact on the game. Was beaten far too easily in the midfield, a recurring problem. 6/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

A surprise inclusion with the omission of Ruben Neves, and like Moutinho had no real impact on the game in what was a weak Wolves midfield. He misplaced too many of his passes and didn’t break up the swarm of Leeds attacks in the second half. 5/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

A refreshing performance at left wing-back from Ait-Nouri who many fans had called for in recent weeks. He looked to get forward with the ball and linked well with the front line. He was solid defensively and withdrawn late for Ki-Jana Hoever. 7/10

 

Adama Traore

Cut a frustrated figure at times with Leeds clearly working on marking him out of the game. Wolves didn’t have the ball for sustained periods which meant Traore didn’t have many opportunities to run into space on either flank. He linked well with Jimenez when he did have the ball. 6/10

 

Raul Jimenez

A strong performance from Wolves’ number nine despite not getting on the scoresheet. He played a pivotal role in instigating the press from the front which during long spells of Leeds possession, helped prevent the number of clear-cut chances the home side had. 7/10

 

Hwang Hee-Chan

Hwang, like Jimenez, contributed an awful lot defensively with his non-stop running and energy. He also gave Wolves the lead poking home from eight yards after a fortunate deflection in his path. 7/10

 

Subs:

Daniel Podence

Came on with 15 minutes to go and brough some much needed energy and fresh legs. His dazzling runs produced two chances for Wolves late on, one of which he will no doubt feel he should have done better with. 6/10

 

Ki-Jana Hoever

Came on at right wing-back for the final ten minutes and looked comfortable, dealing with anything that came his way. 6/10

 

Ruben Neves

Played the final few minutes but should have done better in the build-up to the Leeds penalty, failing to put pressure on Gelhardt before he got into the penalty area. He was passed far too easily as were Moutinho and Dendoncker throughout the game, which must be addressed in the January window. N/A

 

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

villa park

Aston Villa 2-3 Wolves – Player Ratings

Wolves made it nine points out of nine after a stunning and unexpected comeback at Villa Park on Saturday. After a poor first half where neither side really had the upper hand, Villa took control and found themselves 2 goals ahead thanks to Danny Ings and John McGinn. Wolves had produced next to no goal threat in the second half but gave themselves a chance following an excellent move finished off by Romain Saiss. A cleared corner then led to a goalmouth scramble which saw the ball deflect off Captain Conor Coady and into the net after Max Kilman had hit the crossbar. And Wolves produced then produced the most unlikely of wins after a deflected Ruben Neves strike found the bottom corner to send players, fans, and staff crazy. There were great scenes at the final whistle in what feels like a big moment in Wolves’ season ahead of a trip to Leeds next week.

Jose Sa

Produced an excellent save to deny Danny Ings in the chance of the first half but otherwise had little to do. Sa had no chance with either Villa goal. His distribution was good and his celebrations for both the second and third goals means that September’s player of the month is slowly becoming a cult hero. 7/10

Max Kilman

Once again produced a solid defensive display on the right-hand side of defence. Despite the return of Willy Boly from injury, Kilman has done nothing to suggest he should be replaced in the starting Xi having been one of Wolves’ most consistent players so far this season. 7/10

Conor Coady

What a moment for the Wolves captain! Just his fourth Wolves goal and in truth he didn’t know an awful lot about it. That didn’t stop the sheer emotion of the moment spilling over. The joy and passion on Coady’s face at the end was infectious after coming under pressure due to his poor early season form. 7/10

Romain Saiss

Struggled at times to deal with the Villa front line and was far too easily outdone by McGinn for the opening goal of the game. He did however contribute to the Wolves comeback, getting the goal that started the final ten minutes of madness. He was an effective aerial presence in the box at set pieces causing problems as Villa became nervy late on. 6/10

Nelson Semedo

Did relatively well in the first half getting Wolves up the pitch in rare moments of possession. He did seem to struggle more in the second half defensively and failed to link play with Hwang and Traore to produce any meaningful attacks down the right flank. 6/10

Joao Moutinho

Moutinho produced his usual calm and measured display on the ball without having any great impact on the game. He does seem to become less effective in a three-man midfield with Leander Dendoncker and Ruben Neves seeing more of the ball in what was a crowded central area. 6/10

Leander Dendoncker

Introduced into the XI to match up the three-man Villa midfield and did his job effectively. He broke up play on several occasions and looked to give Ruben Neves the chance to play forward whenever possible. 6/10

Ruben Neves

After being relatively quiet for most of the game Ruben Neves came alive in the final ten minutes to spearhead the Wolves comeback. His pass to Daniel Podence for the first goal was sublime and perfectly timed. Neves increased the intensity of the entire team in search of the equaliser and winner and will of course claim the winning goal despite the initial effort being tame. 8/10

Fernando Marcal

Yet another below-par performance from Marcal leaving many supporters wondering just what Rayan Ait-Nouri must do to earn a chance in the side. Marcal struggled defensively at times in the second half and contributed very little going forward, often slowing down the pace of any attack Wolves had. 5/10

Adama Traore

Played more centrally in the absence of Raul Jimenez and produced the best Wolves chance of the first half beating several Villa defenders but his shot was straight at Emi Martinez. After being marked out of the game for most of the second half Traore produced another moment of magic as a bursting run through the midfield won Wolves the free kick which ultimately won the game. 7/10

Hwang Hee-Chan

After the heights of his brace against Newcastle summer signing Hwang Hee-Chan was less than impressive at Villa Park. He failed to link attacks with Traore which will of course improve over time. He also gave the ball away for the second Villa goal despite being under very little pressure as the ball came towards him. 5/10

Subs:

Daniel Podence

Podence came off the bench and alongside Neves really did change the game for Wolves. His energy certainly rubbed off on the rest of the team and Villa really struggled to deal with his pace and technicality. He also produced the assist for the first Wolves goal squaring Neves’ excellent pass for Saiss to tap home.8/10

Fabio Silva

Came on alongside Podence and added energy to the Wolves front line without having any real impact on the ball. Although his playing time is limited Silva will have to do more when he is given an opportunity if he is to stake a claim for a place in the starting XI. 6/10

Raul Jimenez

Much to the surprise of everyone watching on Jimenez was not introduced until the final few minutes of the game. Lage said that he was left out of the side having played three games in a week for Mexico, only returning to Compton after traveling back from South America on Friday morning. You would expect to see Jimenez back in the side for the trip to Elland Road on Saturday. N/A

 

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

Wolves stadium

Southampton 0-1 Wolves – Player Ratings

Wolves picked up just their second victory of the season winning 1-0 at Southampton on Sunday afternoon. Raul Jimenez got his first Premier League goal in an incredibly emotional moment in front of the travelling Wolves fans, with an assist from goalkeeper Jose Sa. Sa made some important saves in the second half in what was a poor game, but Wolves came out victorious and head back to Molineux next week to face Newcastle United.

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Jose Sa

Quite easily the new Wolves shot stopper’s best game in which he commanded his area well, made some vital saves including a double save mid-way through the second half, and played Raul Jimenez in for the winning goal. His distribution is certainly helping Wolves’ more attacking style of play as he begins to look like a real bargain. 8/10

 

Max Kilman

An assured performance from Kilman on the right-hand side of defence as he dealt with anything that came his way. He did not impose himself on the game in possession as he has done in previous games, but his defensive display was faultless. 7/10

 

Conor Coady

Came in for heavy criticism after his performances against Brentford and Tottenham but the Wolves captain looked back to his best on the south coast on Sunday. He was confident defensively, organising the back three throughout the game. He was also good on the ball, looking to link play with the wing backs at every opportunity. Hopefully his early season slump is now behind him. 8/10

 

Romain Saiss

Saiss, like Kilman did what was required of him defensively, which was a big improvement on his recent performances. Many had expected Wily Boly to return in place of Saiss but the Moroccan captain will have given Bruno Lage a selection headache going forwards after a confident display. 7/10

 

Nelson Semedo

Could and perhaps should have put Wolves ahead in the first minute but his shot was straight at the Southampton goalkeeper. Otherwise, it was an impressive display from Semedo who looked lively down the right hand side. Had a couple of concerning moments with the tricky Djenepo but in general dealt with him well. 7/10

 

Joao Moutinho

A quiet afternoon for the Portuguese international as he looked to keep possession with many passes going astray from those around him, particularly in the first half. A solid if not unspectacular afternoon. 6/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

A surprise inclusion in place of Ruben Neves but perhaps deserved a Premier League start after impressing and getting on the scoresheet in midweek. Dendoncker provided Wolves with something they have been missing this season, the ability to break up play in midfield and prevent teams dominating the ball in the middle of the park. 7/10

 

Fernando Marcal

A below-par performance from Marcal who had started the season well. Marcal struggled defensively with Coady and Saiss covering for him on more than one occasion. His passing was out of tune with those around him leading to possession being lost on more than one occasion. 5/10

 

Daniel Podence

A deserved start for Podence after impressing in both games he played in the Carabao Cup. He did not live up to those heights here, with many of his passes going astray. He was however direct and looking to link with Jimenez and Hwang wherever possible. 6/10

 

Raul Jimenez

What a moment for Wolves’ number nine as he finally gets on the scoresheet in the Premier League. It was an extremely good finish which sent the Wolves away end barmy. Jimenez had a lot to do once he received the ball from Sa, but he left two Southampton defenders on the floor as he slotted past McCarthy. 8/10

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Hwang Hee-Chan

Given his first Premier League start in a Wolves shirt and provided great energy in his pressing and will win the ball back. He forced Southampton to give up possession in good areas but failed to have any impact on the game with the ball. 6/10

 

Subs:

Adama Traore

A surprise omission but he did come on for the closing stages of the game. Didn’t have too many opportunities with the ball at his feet but did help Wolves get the ball up the pitch as the aimed to see the game out. He was in a great position for a late counter attack, but Jimenez failed to get the ball across to him, opting to go for goal instead. 6/10

 

Ruben Neves

Played the final ten minutes and kept the ball well as Wolves controlled the game to get the three points. N/A

 

Ki-Jana Hoever

Came on alongside Neves and looked calm on the ball with little to do defensively. N/A

 

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

Billy Wright Stand Molineux

Wolves 2-2 Tottenham (2-3 on penalties) – Player Ratings

Wolves were knocked out of the Carabao Cup on Wednesday evening after fighting back from two goals down against Nuno Espiritio Santo’s Tottenham, only to lose on penalties at Molineux. It was a poor start to the game with Wolves two goals down in the first half an hour as a frustrated Molineux watched on, but Leander Dendoncker’s header five minutes before half time changed the game. Daniel Podence restored parity in front of the Southbank but Wolves failed to capitalise on the momentum, and had John Ruddy to thank for keeping the scores level. Having converted their first two penalties, Wolves went on to miss their next three and Spurs went through as deserved winners.

 

John Ruddy

Couldn’t really have done any more as he make two excellent saves in the second half to ensure the tie went to penalties. He almost let one slip through his gloves too but his misjudgement only resulted in a corner. In the shootout Ruddy saved from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg to keep the home side in it, but Wolves could not convert their own penalties. 8/10
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Yerson Mosquera

A frustrating start to his Wolves career continued as he lasted just nine minutes before having to leave the field through injury. N/A

 

Willy Boly

It was great to see Boly back in the starting XI and he reminded Wolves fans what they had been missing in defence. He will have been disappointed with the first Spurs goal but otherwise put in an assured display. Without Boly the game almost certainly would have been over before penalties. 7/10

 

Max Kilman

Struggled with the defensive shape at times which was not helped by changing personal both before and during the game. He didn’t look his usual self on the ball, particularly in the first half as Wolves were uncomfortable and the crowd became frustrated. Much better in the second half and is likely to keep his place in the side on Sunday. 6/10

 

Ki-Jana Hoever

There is a lot to like about the youngster now in his second season at the club. Hoever uses the ball well and looks to link play down the flank or come inside to get up the field at every opportunity. There is still work to do defensively, and he could certainly do with improving his strength, but that will no doubt improve as he gains experience. 7/10

 

Leander Dendoncker

Just a second start of the season for Leander Dendoncker who, like many, struggled as Spurs dominated the early stages of the game. He covered a lot of ground as we have come to expect but he lacked conviction with his passing. His performance improved in the second period, and he began to get a foothold in the midfield, looking to set Hwang and Traore down the fright hand side. 6/10

 

Ruben Neves

A disappointing night for Ruben Neves who started the night as captain as Conor Coady dropped to the bench. Neves’ passing was nowhere near the standards which he sets and he, along with Dendoncker, failed to assert any control in the midfield in the first half. He went close on two occasions in the second with a long range deflected effort as well as a free kick. His penalty in the shootout was blazed over and rather summed up his evening. 5/10

 

Rayan Ait-Nouri

A promising performance from Ait-Nouri who was good on the ball and looked on take players on at every opportunity. His crossing was excellent, including a superb corner which was converted by Dendoncker in the first half. He left the field with concussion with just ten minutes remaining, but will certainly have given Bruno Lage food for thought ahead of Sunday. 7/10

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Daniel Podence

Another player who will also have given the Head Coach food for thought is Podence. Took his goal extremely well but also looked like Wolves’ most threatening outlet, particularly in the second half. He looks fit and ready following his injury set back over the summer, and it won’t be long before he finds himself in the starting XI for a league game. 7/10

 

Fabio Silva

A frustrating night for Fabio Silva, who although it was not entirely his fault, just could not get going. He cut an isolated figure at times with Wolves on the back foot for most of the first half. His first touch was poor, but he was not helped by those around him who didn’t exactly give him the service which he thrives upon. He was withdrawn at half time as Bruno Lage looked for a way back into the game in Adama Traore. 5/10

 

Hee Chan Hwang

There was a lot of excitement for Hwang’s full debut, but he failed to live up to the heights of his performances against Watford and Brentford. His first touch was poor, and his movement was not quite on the same wavelength as those around him. This will certainly improve over time as he spends more time on the training pitch with his new teammates 6/10

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Subs:

Conor Coady

Came on much earlier than anticipated due to the injury to Mosquera. Had an extremely poor first half, putting Boly in a very difficult position for the first goal when in truth it was an entirely avoidable situation. Looked uncomfortable on the right-hand side of defence but improved as he moved back into the more familiar centre. He, like many, didn’t have his best night in a Wolves shirt. 5/10

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Adama Traore

Came on at half time and injected some much-needed pace and energy into the attack. He got Wolves up the pitch, but his end product was once again lacking despite getting into some good areas down the right-hand side. He was less effective in the middle of the park where Spurs crowded him out too easily as Traore didn’t get the help he needed from those around him. 7/10

 

Nelson Semedo (Concussion Substitution)

Played on the left-hand side for the final ten minutes and looked to get involved in attacks as Wolves searched for a winner. Was comfortable defensively without too much to do. 6/10

 

Joao Moutinho

Came on in the closing stages and added greater assurance to the midfield. He dispatched his penalty superbly which cannot be said for the others. Perhaps most importantly, Moutinho had a well-earned rest ahead of Southampton on Sunday. 6/10

 

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

King Power Stadium

Leicester 1-0 Wolves – Player Ratings

Bruno Lage suffered defeat in his first game in charge of Wolves after a first half Jamie Vardy goal gave Leicester all three points at the King Power Stadium. It was an impressive performance from Wolves and the noisy travelling support showed their appreciation at full time ahead of a full return to Molineux next week. With five senior players unavailable, and new signings expected in the coming weeks, Wolves’ opening day performance was certainly something to build on as the new era gets underway.

 

Jose Sa

A Premier League debut for the new Wolves number one who put in a confident display. He dealt with everything that came his way with good shot stopping and aerial ability but could do little with Jamie Vardy’s clever flick which led to the winning goal. Wolves’ fans saw glimpses of what he can do with his feet too, with the Portuguese looking like a solid replacement for Rui Patricio. 7/10

 

Max Kilman

A very impressive defensive display from Max Kilman who limited Leicester’s threat down the left flank. Kilman was impressive on the ball and looked to link play with the midfield which meant he found himself in advanced positions frequently in the second half. He had one shot blocked at close range and has done himself no harm at all in staking a claim to be a first team regular under Bruno Lage. 8/10

 

Conor Coady

A poor display from the Wolves captain following his return from the England Euro 2020 camp. He was partly at fault for the goal, failing to move towards the cross and clear despite having an obvious special advantage on Jamie Vardy. Vardy caused problems all afternoon with Coady’s lack of pace a concern. He did redeem himself on more than one occasion with a last-ditch tackle, but his performance will have to improve if Wolves are to persist with a higher defensive line. 5/10

 

Romain Saiss

Like Coady, Saiss struggled with the pace of the Leicester forward line and was often found slacking in the higher defensive line which Lage wants to implement. He was strong in the air when defending set pieces, but his struggles have highlighted the need for defensive reinforcements before the transfer window closes at the end of the month. 6/10

 

Ki-Jana Hoever

Given his chance from the off with Nelson Semedo having missed a week’s training due to COVID-19 isolation and Hoever certainly did not do himself any harm with an impressive performance. Hoever was strong in the challenge and defended well in partnership with Kilman. He looked far more comfortable on the ball in comparison to last season and looked to link with Trincao down the right-hand side. If he improves his final ball Hoever could become an excellent option at right wing back this season. 7/10

 

Joao Moutinho

Was widely tipped to leave Molineux this summer but Moutinho looks set to stay for a fourth season in the West Midlands. He produced a solid display on the ball with an obvious increased intensity in comparison to last season. His pass through for Traore to create the chance of the first half was sublime, but his set pieces were poor and led to him giving up duties to Trincao in the second half. 6/10

 

Ruben Neves

Like Moutinho, Ruben Neves was solid in the midfield and didn’t really put a foot wrong. He will have wanted to have a greater impact on the game in the final third as he plays in a slightly more advanced role under new Head Coach Bruno Lage. 6/10

 

Marcal

The forgotten man from last season had an excellent pre-season and continued this form into the league. He looked comfortable at left wing-back and looked to contribute to attacks where possible. He will perhaps be disappointed to have let Ricardo put the cross in for the goal but otherwise had an impressive afternoon and could be a very useful option if he can remain fit this season. 7/10

 

Francisco Trincao

Wolves’ second Premier League debutant showed glimpses of quality and technical ability without having a real impact on the game. He had one good chance cutting in on his left foot in the penalty area, but his shot was blocked. He also showed to be a competent set piece taker which will be a welcome sight to many fans after causing much frustration last season. 6/10

 

Raul Jimenez

A very welcome sight to see Wolves’ number nine back out in competitive action again in front his adoring fans. Jimenez did not get into the game as he would have wished, but still showed glimpses of his old self in his hold up play and aerial presence in the penalty area. Hand any of Traore’s glaring chances fell to the Mexican Wolves would almost certainly have walked away from the King Power with something to show for it. 6/10

 

Adama Traore

The main talking point of the afternoon was most definitely Adama Traore. Used his pace to great effect all afternoon and terrorised the Leicester defence who quite simply could not cope with him. Quite how he didn’t score one of his three glorious chances only he could answer, and he will no doubt feel responsible for Wolves not taking at least a share of the spoils. There is no hiding it, Traore should be scoring the chances that he created. 5/10

 

Subs:

Leander Dendoncker

Came on to add more physicality to the midfield as Wolves pushed more men forward in the second half. Did his job well without having any real impact on Wolves going forward in their search for an equaliser. 6/10

 

Morgan Gibbs-White

His fresh legs injected great energy into Wolves just as they started to tire, and he was at the heart of the late spell of pressure from the away side. Unfortunately, none of the half chances that he created resulted in the equaliser Wolves so desperately wanted. 6/10

 

Fabio Silva

Played the final five minutes meaning he had little chance to get into the game. Would have perhaps been better to bring him on earlier and try to stretch the Leicester back line more. N/A

 

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