Pedro Neto

Traore sub drives Wolves past West Ham


Pedro Neto’s highlight reel volley put an exclamation point on Wolves’ 2-0 win over West Ham United at the London Stadium on Saturday.

Super sub Adama Traore helped set up both goals and Raul Jimenez scored his 14th goal of the season in the win, which sends Wolves level on points with fifth-place Manchester United.

[ MORE: New PL TV schedule ]

West Ham’s 27 points are above the drop zone on goal differential before Bournemouth meets Crystal Palace at 2:45 p.m. ET on Peacock and

Three things we learned

1. Adama Traore changes the game: The Spaniard needed just nine minutes to take the game from 0-0 to 1-0, blazing past a pair of would-be trackers to cross for Jimenez’s finish. But his “hockey assist” on Neto’s goal was wonderful, a brilliant 1v1 move turning his marks inside out before laying off to Matt Doherty for a tremendous cross to Neto.

2. (Most of) Moyes’ boys absent again: Even on a day David Moyes pushed some interesting buttons, his team simply failed to do much of anything. The Scottish manager’s decision to play Tomas Soucek with Mark Noble and drop Declan Rice to center back was a success.

Injuries to Angelo Ogbonna and Sebastien Haller limited him at both ends of the pitch, but five shots does not make a fine performance and both Felipe Anderson and Pablo Fornals had utterly forgettable days.

3.Raul Jimenez continues career year: Now with 14 goals in the Premier League, the Mexican center forward has collected 23 goals and 10 assists across all competitions for Wolves (44 appearances). It’s his best year in league goals after scoring 13 in the PL last season. The 29-year-old is feeling it and is the best North American player in the world right now. He’s also now Wolves’ all-time single season Premier League goal scorer with 14 and counting.

Man of the Match

It’s Traore, but let’s focus on the moment of the match to put a bow on this part of our West Ham – Wolves recap.

VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Lukasz Fabianski had the busier first half-hour of the two keepers, making the lone save and intercepting a pass into the six.

Wolves had the better of the affair, forcing four saves out of Fabianski while holding nearly 60 percent possession.

At the other end Pablo Fornals butchered an in-tight chance to open the scoring.

Still, the chances were very few in a snoozy affair, a moment of life arriving when Jarrod Bowen’s race into the box looks like it might’ve drawn a penalty. Referee Anthony Taylor was right in being unmoved.

Wolves went ahead after the introduction of Traore, who moments after sending a warning cross into the mix spotted Jimenez. Traore cooked Felipe Anderson and Aaron Cresswell before his Mexican target rose to nod home.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Watford holds on through red card to topple Wolves

Watford Wolves recap
Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Watford built a two-goal lead and held on through a 71st minute red card to beat Wolves 2-1 at Vicarage Road on Wednesday.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Nigel Pearson‘s men have now won three of four matches and are two points back of safety with 19 points.

Gerard Deulofeu and Abdoulaye Doucoure scored the goals, the latter on his 27th birthday.

As for Wolves, they fail in a bid to strengthen their top-end credentials and sit seventh with 30 points.

Three things we learned

1. Deulofeu one of the season’s X-factors: Watford got 10 league goals with five assists out of the Spaniard last season, but the 25-year-old hasn’t been able to do as much this go-round. Ismaila Sarr is now humming along, too, and Watford’s attack finding it footing.

Wednesday’s goal was Deulofeu’s fourth of the season, and it’s interesting to note the change in production from his first Premier League stint. At Everton, Deulofeu had eight goals and 19 assists in 75 matches, compared to now 17 and eight in 63 for the Hornets.

2. Wolves losing hope of Top Four: Wolves are playing as many games as anyone in Europe, and maybe this was all a big ask given the brutal fixture list; Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men were unlucky versus Liverpool but not sharp enough Wednesday in losing a second-successive loss. Their twin wins over Man City show that anything is possible, but they really needed to grab these points before the Europa League fixture list begins to torture them again.

3. Mentality fixed under Pearson: Nigel Pearson’s men could’ve wilted given the opposition and the red card, but stood firm against a very good Wolves side to move even closer to the safe spaces. They’ll finish the day between two and four points back of safety, which seemed silly mere weeks ago. Right now, it looks like Watford has a chance to return to their plucky and potent team of last season.

Man of the Match: Most of the best individual days belonged to Wolves, but Deulofeu was part of a lively attack and gets our nod.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ] 

Conor Coady sent Matt Doherty through to goal in the 13th minute, but Ben Foster continued his fine form with a big save.

Wolves wanted a penalty when Pedro Neto hit the deck in the box, but a yellow card was given and VAR stayed with the call.

Deulofeu gave Watford the lead with a curling finish around Rui Patricio. Ismaila Sarr continued his good form with the assist, as the Hornets scored with their fifth attempt of the night.

Sarr came close to a goal of his own when Troy Deeney played him into the right of the 18.

Doucoure made it 2-0 coming out of the break when Deulofeu dribbled to the middle and laid off wide, a hard deflected strike leaving Patricio for dead.

The hour mark saw the match back in play thanks to Neto’s first Premier League goal, a deflected effort from distance.

Jonny Otto won a dangerous free kick for Wolves and a man advantage, too, when he was fouled by Christian Kabasele in the 72nd. The Watford defender sent off, and Wolves were unable to equalize up a man over 19 minutes.

Jota takes super sub to new level in Wolves win

Photo by Andrew Kearns - CameraSport via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Sometimes the phrase “game changer” is used a bit too loosely, but there’s no debating Diogo Jota fit the bill to a ‘t’ on Thursday.

Wolves scored four times in 11 minutes, three coming courtesy Jota, as the Premier League side buried Besiktas 4-0 in Europa League play on Thursday.

Jota entered in the 56th minute, scored in the 57th, and completed his hat trick in the 68th.

[ MORE: Who can Wolves draw in UEL? ]

Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men had already clinched a place in the knockout rounds before the match day, and finish one point below Braga in Group K.

Jota has five goals in five days after scoring twice against Brighton on Sunday. The 23-year-old had an up-and-down season to start but has been mostly good over the past half-dozen games.

He has 37 goals in 107 matches with Wolves, including nine in all competitions this season. He scored nine times last season after a 17-goal campaign in the Championship.

Leander Dendoncker had Wolves’ other goal, with the day’s assists going to Oskar Buur, Joao Moutinho, and Pedro Neto.