West Brom battle out vital Black Country derby win at Wolves

The result comes as Sam Allardyce’s first win as Baggies boss and brings them to within touching distance of moving out of the drop zone.

And it was the under pressure visitors who were the brighter side in the opening stages with Wolves gifting them an opener on eight minutes.

Willy Boly collided with Callum Robinson inside the box and star man Matheus Pereira calmly tucked home from the spot.

But that goal only served wake Wolves up as Adama Traore tested David Button and Portuguese international Pedro Neto lashed wide.

And with the traffic heading in one direction Wolves netted a quick-fire double to take the lead before the break.

Fabio Silva turned home his first Molineux goal before Boly made up for his penalty gaffe as he reacted quickest to smash home from a corner.

But despite ended the first period strongly the game was flipped on its head once again within minutes of the restart.

Centre back Semi Ajayi bulleted a header past Rui Patricio and Robinson tumbled inside the box once again and Pereira fired home.

The tie did rock back in Wolves’ favour in the closing minutes and Nelson Semedo missed perfect chance to nick a point.

Full Time on a cracker of an afternoon at Molineux it’s Wolves 2 West Brom 3

Premier League: Wolves v West Brom

It has been almost nine years since these two Black Country clubs last did battle and the trajectory of both sides makes for interesting reading in that time frame.

Since new owners arrived at Molineux in 2017, Wolves have gained promotion to the Premier League and secured successive seventh placed finishes in the top flight.

Neighbours West Brom meanwhile saw their Premier League journey come to an end in 2018 before returning to the first tier of English football last season.

It’s fair to argue that the bragging rights in recent times regarding overall success fall firmly in the corner of Wolves, but from a head-to-head perspective Baggies fans have always been swift to remind their rivals of the 1-5 hammering they gave them when the two sides last met in 2012.

The landscape is slightly different this season though, with Albion getting rid of boss Slaven Bilic last month in favour of Sam Allardyce as they battle to beat the drop, whilst Wolves have not looked their usual selves in what has been a lacklustre campaign for them so far.

Allardyce is searching for his first win as West Brom manager since taking charge, with the Baggies’ last three points coming in late November against fellow strugglers Sheffield United.

Albion’s leaky defence is a major concern for ‘Big Sam’, whose side have shipped thirteen goals in their last four matches whilst registering just one strike of their own.

Interestingly, it has been Wolves’ bluntness upfront since the injury to Raul Jimenez in late November which has been their main issue – boss Nuno Espirito Santo has been relying on 18-year-old record signing Fabio Silva to fill the void left by the Mexican, with the youngster yet to really hit his stride.

As such, Wolves have recalled Patrick Cutrone from his loan spell at Serie A Fiorentina in order to increase firepower, with the club no doubt considering whether to swoop for another forward in the January window.

Underlining this is the fact that Wanderers have scored just 19 goals this season – considerably fewer than any of the 13 sides currently above them in the Premier League table.

Jimenez remains out for Wanderers for the derby at Molineux with that fractured skull, as does fellow long-term injury absentee Jonny Otto.

Recent injuries to Marcal and Daniel Podence means they will miss out against West Brom, but Nuno Espirito Santo will need to make a decision on Adama Traore’s fitness after complaints of a tight hamstring.

Willy Boly is also a major doubt to feature for Wolves following a hamstring issue of his own.

Albion meanwhile have fewer selection concerns, although Sam Allardyce will be missing Chelsea loanee Conor Gallagher after an accumulation of yellow cards landed him a suspension.

Recent signing Karlan Grant is also ruled out for West Bromwich Albion with a broken foot.

Hal Robson-Kanu and Conor Townsend have both been missing for a while and are extremely unlikely to travel to Molineux.

The West Midlands derby between Wolves and West Brom is a 12.30pm kick off on Saturday 16th January.

Premier League: Wolves v Everton

Both sides came through their respective FA Cup third round ties at the weekend, with Wolves seeing off fellow top flight side Crystal Palace 1-0, but things weren’t as straightforward for Everton.

The Toffees were taken to extra time by Championship club Rotherham United, with an Abdoulaye Doucoure goal the eventual difference between the sides.

Wolves may be hoping that Everton’s need to go 120 minutes in the cup may result in fatigue at Molineux on Tuesday, where Nuno Espirito Santo’s men will be looking to shorten the 7 point gap which has opened up between themselves and the Merseysiders.

Everton meanwhile have enjoyed a solid season so far and currently reside in 7th but can move briefly in to the top four with a win in the West Midlands.

Wanderers will want the three points themselves though after a worrying recent slump in the Premier League which sees them in 13th position and playing catch up to those in the Europa League hunt.

Nuno Espirito Santo has arguably found things particularly difficult since Raul Jimenez sustained a fractured skull, with a lot being asked of 18-year-old record signing Fabio Silva to fill the Mexican’s shoes.

Such is the Wolves gaffer’s concern over his forward options, the club have moved to recall Patrick Cutrone from his loan spell in Serie A with Fiorentina and the Italian is likely to be involved should he have returned negative coronavirus tests upon his return to the UK.

Wolves will also be without Marcal due to injury, with Willy Boly also a doubt to feature against Everton.

The Toffees also have injury concerns, with usual suspects Jean-Philippe Gbamin and Fabian Delph still unavailable – summer signing Allan also remains on the sidelines for this one.

Carlo Ancelotti opted to rest Richarlison in the FA Cup against Rotherham, but the veteran Blues boss has hinted the Brazilian forward will return to the action at Molineux.

However, the absence of Dominic Calvert-Lewin will be a blow to Everton with the striker unavailable due to a hamstring strain.

Wolves v Everton at Molineux kicks off at 8.15pm on Tuesday 12th January.

Wolves cruise past Crystal Palace into the FA Cup Fourth Round

Nuno Santo’s side bossed things right from kick off in this one with Fabio Silva wasting a brilliant chance to head home before Traore lashed wide.

But the Spaniard wasn’t to be denied second time around as he cut inside Eberechi Eze and crashed one past Jack Butland.

Palace failed to muster up a response after the break as Butland worked overtime to keep them in it.

The England international reminded Roy Hodgson of what he can do with superb stops from Leander Dendoncker and Pedro Neto.

But in the end a limp Palace attack never troubled Santo’s back line as they bowed out in Round Three.

Full Time at Molineux it’s Wolves 1 Crystal Palace 0

Premier League: Manchester United vs Wolves

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side could climb to 2nd place with a win, only 2 points behind league-leaders Liverpool.

The Red Devils could be without star-man Marcus Rashford though after he aggravated a long-standing shoulder problem in their 2-2 draw against Leicester City.

United will be looking to extend their unbeaten run in the Premier League to eight matches whilst Wolves will be looking for only their second win in 6 matches.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s side did show signs of promise, however, after a strong performance at the Molineux earned them a point against Jose Mourinho’s Spurs, despite going a goal down in the opening minute.

Meetings between the two sides don’t generally produce many goals, with only 3 in the last 4 outings but Solskjaer’s side are in fine goal-scoring form, netting 13 in their last 4.

United are likely to rotate heavily for the game, Alex Telles, Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba, Mason Greenwood and Edinson Cavani could all see returns to the line-up after starting from the bench on Saturday.

The game is a 20:00 pm kick-off at Old Trafford on Tuesday 29th December.

Premier League: Manchester United vs Wolves

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side could climb to 2nd place with a win, only 2 points behind league-leaders Liverpool.

The Red Devils could be without star-man Marcus Rashford though after he aggravated a long-standing shoulder problem in their 2-2 draw against Leicester City.

United will be looking to extend their unbeaten run in the Premier League to eight matches whilst Wolves will be looking for only their second win in 6 matches.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s side did show signs of promise, however, after a strong performance at the Molineux earned them a point against Jose Mourinho’s Spurs, despite going a goal down in the opening minute.

Meetings between the two sides don’t generally produce many goals, with only 3 in the last 4 outings but Solskjaer’s side are in fine goal-scoring form, netting 13 in their last 4.

United are likely to rotate heavily for the game, Alex Telles, Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba, Mason Greenwood and Edinson Cavani could all see returns to the line-up after starting from the bench on Saturday.

The game is a 20:00 pm kick-off at Old Trafford on Tuesday 29th December.

Wolves fight back to seal 1-1 draw with Tottenham

The hosts have struggled to string results together in recent weeks but a draw in this one should reinject some confidence.

Neither side showed their best on a freezing night in the West Midlands, despite Spurs taking the inside sixty seconds at Molineux.

Ben Davies’ speed took him in behind the Wolves defence and Tanguy Ndombele arrived in the box to bury his cross.

However, Mourinho’s side failed to build on that momentum before the break as Hugo Lloris produced a pair of stops to deny Daniel Podence.

Wolves picked up where they left off after the break, as Mourinho looked to stick to his principles and dig in.

But just as Spurs looked set to cling on for the three points, Saiss got above his man from Pedro Neto’s corner, to bullet home an equaliser.

Full Time from Molineux it’s Wolves 1 Tottenham 1

Premier League Preview: Wolves v Tottenham

Defeats to Liverpool and Leicester have forced Spurs out of the Top Four in recent weeks with Nuno Santo’s Wolves winning just once this month.

Mourinho rang the changes for the midweek cup win over Stoke and the Portuguese boss is likely to recall most of his big hitters.

Toby Alderweireld, Sergio Reguilon and Son Heung-min were all rested against Michael O’Neill’s team and should be fresh to return at Molineux.

Defeat to Burnley in midweek will have raised some selection problems for Santo to mull over and he will look to overhaul his starting side.

Willy Boly and Fernando Marcal should come back to stiffen up the defence with Adama Traore and Fabio Silva set to add some greater attacking power.

Kick Off in this one is at 8pm at Molineux.

Premier League: Wolverhampton Wanderers v Chelsea

It was a weekend to forget for both clubs, with Chelsea’s chase of Premier League top spot scuppered by a 1-0 loss to Everton at Goodison Park, whilst Wolves’ weekend ended in hurt after losing to fellow midlands club Aston Villa in their last outing.

Chelsea’s impressive unbeaten run was halted at the hands of former manager Carlo Ancelotti, whose Everton team scored the first goal past Blues keeper Edouard Mendy in 5 matches.

Wolves meanwhile saw Raul Jimenez make a training ground visit before the game for the first time since surgery on a fractured skull, but Nuno Espirito Santo was on the wrong end of a 2-1 scoreline against Aston Villa in a fiery affair which saw Joao Moutinho sent off.

Wanderers have now slipped in to the bottom half of the table after defeat, with Chelsea now outside of the Champions League spots in 5th after 12 games.

In terms of team news, Wolves will be without Joao Moutinho at Molineux due to his red card against Aston Villa, so Ruben Neves is likely to come in to replace him.

Striker Raul Jimenez is of course absent as he continues to recover from that fractured skull sustained against Arsenal.

Willy Boly was amongst the substitutes at the weekend and may be considered from the start, along with Rayan Ait Nouri who is pushing for inclusion in the starting eleven.

Christian Pulisic missed Chelsea’s loss at Everton with a recurrence of a niggling hamstring issue and Frank Lampard is unlikely to have him fit for Tuesday’s game.

Callum Hudson-Odoi and Hakim Ziyech are also both absentees and aren’t expected to see any action this side of Christmas.

That means it is almost inevitable that Timo Werner and Kai Havertz will be operating on either flank from the get-go.

Wolves v Chelsea in the Premier League kicks off at 6pm on Tuesday 15th December.

Aston Villa snatch 1-0 Premier League win at Wolves

In a game of very few clear-cut chances at either end it was Anwar El Ghazi’s 94th minute penalty that clinched three points for Villa.

Both set of players looked rusty in the opening exchanges at Molineux with Daniel Podence and Leander Dendoncker testing Emiliano Martinez.

Wolves did look to be edging at after the break as teenage striker Fabio Silva was presented with a perfect chance to put them in front.

The Portuguese international slipped past two Villa challenges inside the box but his snapshot fired back off the post.

Nuno Santo’s side pushed hard for a breakthrough in closing, but Martinez showed his class once again as the Uruguayan denied Roman Saiss and Nelson Semedo.

And with Wolves unable to find a way past Martinez in the closing stages Villa ducked in to take advantage in a chaotic last five minutes.

Douglas Luiz was shown a second yellow card for Villa before Mike Dean controversially pointed to the spot as Semedo tangled with John McGinn inside the box.

El Ghazi kept his cool to slot past Rui Patricio as Wolves’ protests spilled after the final whistle with Joao Moutinho joining Luiz for an early bath.

Full Time at Molineux it’s Wolves 0 Aston Villa 1

Premier League Preview: Wolves v Aston Villa

Nuno Santo’s side have been inconsistent in recent weeks with just one win from their last four games in the Premier League.

A win at Arsenal two weeks ago was followed with defeat at Liverpool last time out but the Portuguese boss is only expected to make limited changes to his starting XI.

With Raul Jimenez the only long-term absentee for Santo he could name an unchanged side from the defeat at Anfield.

But if Wolves’ form is a cause for concern for Santo, Dean Smith has even deeper worries with just one win from five for the Villa.

Smith is expected to be a bit more liberal with his changes than Santo with eight players sidelined for the visitors.

Ross Barkley and Keinan Davis are back in training but Smith will not risk them this weekend with a busy run of games coming up.

Matty Cash should shake off a minor knock in time to play and Bertrand Traore and Anwar El Ghazi should also return to freshen up the attack.

Kick Off is 12.30pm tomorrow at Molineux

Premier League Preview: Wolves v Aston Villa

Nuno Santo’s side have been inconsistent in recent weeks with just one win from their last four games in the Premier League.

A win at Arsenal two weeks ago was followed with defeat at Liverpool last time out but the Portuguese boss is only expected to make limited changes to his starting XI.

With Raul Jimenez the only long-term absentee for Santo he could name an unchanged side from the defeat at Anfield.

But if Wolves’ form is a cause for concern for Santo, Dean Smith has even deeper worries with just one win from five for the Villa.

Smith is expected to be a bit more liberal with his changes than Santo with eight players sidelined for the visitors.

Ross Barkley and Keinan Davis are back in training but Smith will not risk them this weekend with a busy run of games coming up.

Matty Cash should shake off a minor knock in time to play and Bertrand Traore and Anwar El Ghazi should also return to freshen up the attack.

Kick Off is 12.30pm tomorrow at Molineux