Pedro Neto (right) scored in each of his three Premier League appearances against Southampton.
Pedro Neto scored a wonderful goal for Wolves in their win over Southampton at St Mary’s Stadium.
It was a two-goal story as the visitors showed more attacking spirit after half-time and inflicted Southampton’s sixth consecutive defeat in the Premier League.
The hosts controlled the early stages and took the lead when Danny Ings scored with a superb volley after being replaced by Stuart Armstrong.
Referee Graham Scott awarded a penalty in the 57th minute after ruling that Ryan Bertrand’s use of his hand to block a Nelson Semedo shot attempt was illegal. The Saints defender and his teammates were stunned by the decision, but it was upheld and Reuben Neves converted on the dot.
Wolves, pressured by the goal, took the lead when Neto passed Yannick Westergaard and placed his corner kick between Ian Bednarek and goalkeeper Alex McCarthy.
The Saints pressed for an equaliser but failed to beat Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio, who made two saves from James Ward-Prowse and Che Adams.
Wolves are 12th in the Premier League, one point and one place ahead of Southampton.
Saints destroyed by controversial decision
Controversial decisions are boring for any team, but they’re even more boring when you’re desperate to score a point, let alone win.
In a split second Bertrand turned to avoid being hit in the face by a cross from Semedo, he couldn’t imagine Judge Scott making the point.
The question was whether the left arm was in an abnormal position – the VAR team saw no need for the employee to reconsider his original decision.
Ralph Hasenhuttle’s team never recovered from the defensive weaknesses that cost them so much in the recent past. As brilliant as Neto’s shot was, could Westergaard have blocked his run? Should McCarthy have been defeated from that angle?
It was unfortunate for Saints, who showed such dominance early in the game that they beat Wolves in the FA Cup on Thursday.
Ings, along with Stuart Armstrong and Nathan Redmond, was a formidable attacking force, and his kick-offs were typically instinctive and creative. It was his thirtieth. Premier League goals since the start of last season. Only Mohamed Salah (36) of Liverpool, Jamie Vardy (35) of Leicester and Harry Kane (31) of Tottenham Hotspur have done better.
The striker’s progress has been hampered by injuries in recent years, but if he manages to stay in shape, Hasenhuttle will be able to get out of this rut.
Tactical change: Nuno pays
This result should calm the nerves of Wolves fans. That’s seven points from their last three league games, perhaps proving the team can win even without top striker Raul Jimenez, who is still recovering from a head injury.
The visitors were too deep in the first half, but coach Nuno Espirito Santo changed the system for the second half, allowing wingers Semedo and Adam Traore to create more chances.
Neves was perhaps Nuno’s most useful player in attack in Jimenez’s absence, converting his penalty with aplomb, while Neto’s perfect goal, 20, underlined yet again why he is one of football’s greatest talents.
It’s too much for me – Comment.
Ralph Hasenhuttle, boss of Southampton, in conversation with Amazon Prime: I don’t think we should talk about our race. We know what happened today. It is difficult to explain this defeat.
They had no chance to score before the penalty. I don’t understand how you can give in to this punishment.
Honestly, it’s too much for me.
Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo talks to Amazon Prime: It was a very difficult match. Both halves were very stiff. Southampton played the game in the first half. We took the lead in the second half, scored two goals and then defended very well.
It was a good shot for the penalty and then the referee’s decision.
I disagree that the first half was disappointing. It was a tough match. Southampton is a good team.
Powers of the Portuguese premier league – Statistics
- For the first time in its history, Southampton lost six league games in a row.
- Wolves have won ten Premier League games since the start of the 2018/19 season, finishing ahead of Liverpool (14) and Manchester United (12).
- Southampton have led in each of their last four Premier League games against Wolves, but have yet to win a single game (D2 L2).
- The Wolves have not opened the scoring in any of their last 14 Premier League games; only Manchester City have failed to score the first goal of a game longer in 1995 (16 games).
- Portuguese players have scored more goals in the Premier League for Wolves than players from any other country (47), one more goal than the English.
- Neto was directly involved in nine goals in the Premier League this season (five goals and four assists), which is the highest number of players under 21 this season.
What’s the next step?
Wolves host Leeds on Friday (20:00 GMT) and Southampton host Chelsea on Saturday (12:30 GMT).
The player of the game
Ruben NevesRuben Neves
The Wolverhampton Wanderers
- Name of player in team number 8Ruben Nevis
- Team number 11Player nameRui Patricio
- Name of the player of team number 7Pedro Neto
- Team number19 Player nameJohnny
- Team number16Player nameCoady
- Team number 37Player name
- Team number 28. The player’s name is Joan Moutinho.
- Team number 27Player nameSeiss
- Team number 5 Player nameMarsal
- Team number32Player nameDendoncker
- Team number22Player nameNelson Semedo
- Team number 12The player’s name is Willian Jose
- Team Number49 Player NameKilman
- Team number 17Player nameFabio Silva
- 2Walker ReturnsReserved by analyst 72’minutes
- 35BednarekReserved in 61Minutes
- 17ArmstrongReplaced by Adamsin 69’minutes
- 6RomeuBay at 17 minutes
- 19MinaminoReplaced for the generic 62’minutes
- 10 Adams
- 65 W
22Nelson Semedo8Neves28Joan Moutinho19Castro Otto
- Muy Patricio.
- 27SeissBocking on 54Minutes
- 22 Nelson Semedo
- 28 Joan Moutinho
- 19Castro OttoReplacement of Marçalat 69’minutes
- 12Da SilvaSubstitution of Fabio Silvain in the 89th minute
- 7Not reserved for 90 minutesChangé for Kilmanat 90+3 minutes
- 2 However
- 17 Fabio Silva
- 18 White Gibbs
- Game over, Southampton 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.
- End of second half, Southampton 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2.
- Alternatively, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Maximilian Kilman takes over from Pedro Neto.
- Offside, Southampton. Jan Bednarek plays a forward pass but the referee sees Danny Ings is offside.
- Pedro Neto (Wolverhampton Wanderers) receives a warning from the referee.
- Oriol Romeu (Southampton) takes a free kick on the left wing.
- Pedro Neto (Wolverhampton Wanderers) is penalised after committing a foul.
- Oriol Romeu (Southampton) hits a free kick on the opponent’s half.
- João Moutinho (Wolverhampton Wanderers) is penalised after committing a foul.
- Alternatively, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Fabio Silva replaces Willian Jose.
- Oriol Romeu (Southampton) hits a free kick on the opponent’s half.
- Offence by Marsala (Wolverhampton Wanderers).
- The attempt failed. Che Adams (Southampton)’s header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Set up by Nathan Redmond with a cross.
- Ryan Bertrand (Southampton FC) is penalised after committing a foul.
- Nelson Semedo (Wolverhampton Wanderers) hits a free kick on the opponent’s half.
- Offside, Southampton. James Ward-Prowse passes forward but Che Adams is flagged as offside by the referee.
- Attempting rescue. James Ward-Prowse (Southampton) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the bottom left corner.
- Corner, Southampton. Distraction by Leander Dendonker.
- Attempt blocked. Adama Traore’s (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot was blocked on the edge of the box.
- Corner, Wolverhampton Wanderers. ceded to Rome by the Orioles.