Wolves in Europa League driving seat after lethal double act Jota and Jimenez star again

Wolves in Europa League driving seat after lethal double act Jota and Jimenez star again

Articles Blog


NUNO ESPIRITO SANTO kept his vow to fly the flag for England as Wolves took a giant stride toward the Europa League group stages  Three days after tussling with Manchester United, Nuno’s boys still had enough left in the tank to trounce Torino in Turin  An own goal by Torino’s Brazilian defender Bremer just before half-time set them up and second half goals from Diogo Jota and Raul Jimenez killed off Torino, who had flickered into life briefly when Lorenzo De Silvestri made it 2-1 with a header  But it simply spurred the visitors on and Jimenez showed astonishing levels of endurance to run fully 40 yards before calmly shutting up a Torino side who lost their discipline  They moaned throughout at Portuguese ref Artur Dias, accusing him of favouring Wolves’ Portuguese colony  But the bottom line was the rot was started by one of their own!  Nuno turned to Jesus for inspiration in Turin, putting his faith in 22-year-old Real Madrid loan signing Jesus Vallejo to partner Conor Coady and Willy Boly in defence  It was a bold move to replace the ever-reliable Ryan Bennett with a youngster, making only his second start for the club  But it showed how highly Nuno rates the boy from the Bernabeau, who never let him down and looks another astute signing  However the biggest talking point among the Italian media corps was the shock absence of star midfielder Ruben Neves who started on the bench, while Moroccan powerhouse Romain Saiss took his place NUNO’S TACTICAL MASTERCLASS  It was scant reward for the sensational strike which had earned a point against United but this was Wolves’ second match in three days and their seventh in four hectic weeks  Considering the pressure Saiss put on Bremer at Wolves’ opener, it was another impressive tactical masterclass from Nuno  Adama Traore came in for Matt Doherty and immediately put Torino on the back foot with a blistering turn of pace which left Cristian Ansaidi gasping  However the Spaniard then showed the other side to his game with a wayward cross which frustratingly flew straight out of the park  Simone Zaza, a former flop at West Ham, flashed a header wide as both sides tested each other out with a couple of opening jabs  Traore was proving a real nuisance down Torino’s right and Ansaidi was clearly growing tired of constantly tracking back  So the next time Traore took off it was left-centre-back Bremer who was exposed as the ball was delivered low and accurately to Jota whose shot was desperately blocked by Torino keeper Salvatore Sirigu’s feet  Wolves survived a scare of their own after 20 minutes when Soualiho Meite rose to power in a header from Armando Izzo’s cross which crashed off Rui Patricio’s crossbar and over  But the visitors were giving as good as they got and Leander Dendoncker squandered a decent chance, heading wide after Moutinho’s free kick picked him out  If Portuguese referee Artur Dias was an unpopular choice prior to kick off, due to his shared nationality with so many of Wolves players and staff, he was about to become promoted to ‘figure of hate,’ by Torino fans BREMER HEADS OWN GOAL  First he ignored howls of protest from the home crowd when Boly sent Belotti sprawling, then raging Torino boss Walter Mazzarri accused him of favouring Wolves as Lorenzo De Silvestri was penalised for pulling back Moutinho  But Mazzarri went absolutely ballistic when Wolves snatched the lead from the resulting free kick  Moutinho’s delivery was sensational and as Saiss attacked the ball in a crowded box Bremer charged in and the ball glanced off his head and sped beyond Sirigu and into his own net  Mazzarri ranted and raved at the injustice but the bottom line was Wolves were ahead – and looking good for their lead  Torino were starting to unravel. Belotti was booked before the break for a foul on Traore and Ansaidi and Berenguer swiftly followed him into the book, all for fouls on Traore  The Italians simply had no answer to the former Barcelona speed-merchant who capped a brilliant display by setting up Wolves’ second VINAGRE’S RUSH OF BLOOD  Traore skipped by Bremer yet again and from his low centre Jota calmly side-footed the ball past Sirigu from 12 yards  Wolves 1,500-strong travelling support were having the time of their lives.  But Torino briefly halted the party and gave themselves a glimmer of hope by pulling one back through De Silvestri, who stole in at the back post to head home Ansaldi’s cross  However Wolves were in no mood to buckle and, even though the superb Traore had to be replaced by Jonny, they added a third to restore their two-goal advantage through after 72 minutes  Raul Jimenez collected the ball just inside Torino’s half and took off on a powerful run which saw him drift through a disintegrating home defence before showing great composure to slot the ball home left-footed past Sirigu  Vinagre had a late rush of blood to his head with one minute of normal time remaining when he sent Andrea Belotti crashing down in the box  This time ref Dias did something the home support approved of as he pointed to the spot  Belotti stepped up to smash his spot kick beyond Patricio, who couldn’t repeat his heroics of Monday night when he defied Paul Pogba  It was a late blow but you would back Wolves at home in the return leg.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *